By Simon Echewofun Sunday
Wed, 08 Dec 2021
The Minister of State for Power, Goddy Jedy-Agba, has said the rehabilitation of a turbine and the installation of two new turbines at Kainji Hydropower Plant in Niger State will add 220 megawatts (MW) to the national grid.
The minister stated this on Tuesday in Abuja at the signing ceremony of the turbine installation project by Mainstream Energy Solutions Limited (MESL) and Power China Huadong Engineering Corporation (HEC).
Jedy-Agba who was represented by the Managing Director of the Rural Electrification Agency, Ahmad Salihijo, lauded MESL for the expansion project.
He said, “If every concessionaire can show this commitment, then we will record tremendous success in the power sector.”
He said this expansion will bring an additional 280MW into the national grid and will feed the west African power pool.
He also noted the challenges of GenCo adding that the government was working to improve the power sector.
Chairman of the MESL board, Col. Sani Bello, urged the operators of the electricity market to promptly pay for energy and grant more access to Kainji and Jebba hydros as it is cheaper energy for Nigerians.
He also called on the government to review the concession fee from dollar to naira. “We implore the federal government to consider a special allocation of foreign exchange to the power sector to alleviate the waiting period,” he added.
Managing Director of MESL, Engr. Lamu Audu said 80MW will come from rehabilitating Unit 1G9 while the installation of Units 1G3 & 1G4 will provide an additional 220MW.
“Since the commencement of operations, we have recovered a total 542MW from both Kainji & Jebba HPPs. Following the recent completion of the recovery of Kainji Unit 1G7, which will add 80MW to the National Grid, bringing our total available capacity to 1002MW and counting.”
He said MESL has made a $240 million investment in capacity recovery since it took over Kainji and Jebba hydros in 2013.
This includes the $108m to be spent on the new turbines installation and rehab works, Audu noted.
The acting Managing Director, Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), Engr. Sule Abdulaziz also lauded MESL. “As far as TCN is concerned, I can say they are one of the best, noting that TCN is ready to evacuate all the power generated from Kainji with the expansion.
The Director-General, Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), Alex Okoh, the MESL expansion programme is proving that the power sector privatisation was yielding results.
He said the concession performance agreement done by BPE and the National Council on Privatisation in 2019 shows the firm was performing as expected.
Managing Director of HEC Nigeria Ltd, Mr Hu Dingguo, said the project will be delivered within the time frame noting that it is committed to being part of the Kainji expansion project which is the largest hydropower plant so far in Nigeria.