Despite Gencos N200bn fund, gas shortage stalls 23,081MW (Read Full Details)

The dearth of gas stalled the generation of 23,081.5 megawatts of electricity in eight days despite the N200bn that was paid by the Federal Government recently to the power sector, particularly for settling gas debts.

Investigations showed that between April 16 and 23, 2020, gas constraint persisted as the most daily dominant challenge to power generation. Findings revealed that after the government announced on April 15 that it had paid N200bn to the power sector, especially to make gas available, the commodity remained unavailable as required to run gas-fired thermal power plants.

The Group Managing Director, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Mele Kyari, declared on April 15 that the Federal Government had paid over N200bn for power supply in Nigeria.

Kyari disclosed this after a meeting with the Minister of Power, Sale Mamman; Managing Director, Transmission Company of Nigeria, Usman Mohammed; and Managing Director, Niger Delta Power Holding Company, Chiedu Ugbo, among others. Explaining what the government was doing to resolve the non-payment for gas by power generation companies, Kyari said, “Actually, the Federal Government has made payments of over N200bn for power in the last two to three days.

“This will go a long way in making sure that those payment issues are resolved. And we are engaging as a government and as a team to make sure that those payment issues are fully settled.”

However, data obtained by our correspondent in Abuja on Saturday from the Advisory Power Team in the Office of the Vice President showed that the next day after Kyari’s announcement (April 16, 2020), gas unavailability alone stalled the generation of 3,210MW of power. It was further observed that this persisted for one more week, as gas shortage prevented the generation of 3,168MW, 3,041.5MW and 2,788.5MW on April 17, 18 and 19 respectively.

Shortage of gas further stopped the production of 2,708MW, 2,623.5MW, 2,750MW and 2,792MW on April 20, 21, 22 and 23 respectively. Power generation and distribution companies, however, denied knowledge of the N200bn payment to the sector by the Federal Government. They told our correspondent that they did not get the funds.

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