The Managing Director, Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), Mr. Usman Gur Mohammed has said for Nigeria to have stable electricity supply, the power sector must be run like a business, where consumers are ready pay.
Mohammed made this remark at a policy dialogue on power sector organised by the Arewa Research and Development Project (ARDP) at the weekend in Kaduna.
The TCN chief said uninterrupted power supply was possible in Nigeria, but that this requires huge investments in critical infrastructure for power distribution and preparedness of consumers to pay for what is consumed.
He explained: “In African countries where there is stable power supply, people pay for electricity that they consume. If you go to places like Borkina Faso for example, the cost of electricity is more than two times what we have here and the people are paying.
“I want to tell Nigerians that, generally, electricity has to be run like a business and that means we have to pay for electricity for us to have electricity. So, this idea of people not wanting to pay, and feeling that, electricity is a social service, should stop, that culture should stop, so that, we can expand the grid and provide stable electricity.
“Electricity is an investment that is required to have the network and that investment requires that, people who are consuming this product should pay”, he stressed.
Noting that the present government inherited a power sector that had problems in generation, transmission and distribution, the industry expert noted that government had been able to fix the challenges in generation and transmission to a large extent.
According to him, there are some mistakes that were made in the privatization of the power sector that led very weak companies taking over the distribution sub sector.
Mohammed pointed out that “we need to correct that weakness created by the recapitalization of the Discos, because when we privatized, we didn’t have the synergical investments coming into the distribution network. Definitely, there is something that needs to be corrected and that is why I said there were mistakes.”
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