Social Issues

Nigerians Bemoan Erratic Power Supply As Power Generation Falls to 2,954MW

One thing which has come to define Nigeria over successive regimes is an inability to effectively tackle one of the biggest problems we face; electricity!

The Obasanjo administration reportedly spent over N16 billion on the power sector in eight years with no recognisable improvement in power supply or distribution. With the quantum of money spent, his administration was unable to push power generation to 6,000MW.

In 2011, it was obvious that one of the things the incoming government would need to tackle head on would be power supply. The average Nigerian spends a fortune on buying generating sets as well as fueling his generators.

It is not uncommon to find a family with three or four generating sets; this is how bad the electricity situation is.

During Goodluck Jonathan’s “wind of change” campaign, he promised to increase power generation to 6,000MW by the end of his first term.

Perhaps, it was in trying to achieve this goal that the Power Holding Company of Nigeria was unbundled and distribution companies were allowed a free hand to operate. For a while, we enjoyed passable and average power supply.

However, the past few weeks have been hell on earth, complete with the darkness. It is now considered a major miracle to enjoy more than four hours of electricity daily! The expenditure on fueling generators have gone up threefold. This hasn’t stop the power distribution agencies from delivering suspicious bills for power which wasn’t consumed.

It’s the second week of December and we’re left wondering, what happened to the 6,000MW we were promised? Two weeks ago, Dr. Doyin Okupe, one of the senior special advisers to the President on media insisted in an interview that the government has plans in place to achieve 6,000MW generation before the end of December.

Short of pulling twenty rabbits out of a hat, it’s hard to see how this would happen. As of today, power generation has nosedived to 2,954MW from 3,206MW reportedly generated a few weeks ago.

It’s a dicey situation which doesn’t look like improving anytime soon. Brace yourselves, it’s going to be generator season for a while!

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