Power Sector: FG, Governors Call For Help

By Harry Awurumibe, Head, Abuja Bureau

The National Economic Council (NEC) has admitted that there is a serious fundamental problem with Nigeria’s power sector even as the Federal Government is said to have spent trillions of naira to support power generation and distribution companies to supply Nigerians with steady electricity.

All the 36 state governors, FCT minister, CBN governor and few ministers superintending key ministries are members of NEC that is statutorily headed by the Vice President.

Kaduna State Governor, Mallam Nasir el- Rufai who is also Chairman of NEC Committee on the Ownership of Power Distribution Companies, announced this to State House Correspondents today (Thursday), after the first NEC meeting for 2020.

He disclosed that NEC has approved his committee’s request to call for Public memoranda, to invite Nigerians with suggestions and ideas of how to solve the electricity problem to come forward to help address the issue which he said has reached national emergency.

Said he, “Electricity supply in Nigeria is broken and Nigeria cannot make any meaningful progress or development without fixing the electricity problem”.

Gov. El-Rufai stressed that government will not continue to spend trillions of naira in the power sector without any visible impact, adding that it will be unwise for the country to lock up N10 trillion Pension Fund while the power problems persist.

According to him NEC has agreed that it will do the country a world of good to free about N2 trillion to be made available as loans and bonds which private companies can assess or borrow to build roads and also involve in rail transportation like buying more coaches to carry passengers.

Mallam El-Rufai added that council equally sustained its call for the deployment of a percentage of the Contributory Pension fund for roads and infrastructure development.

Also briefing State House Correspondents, Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu said Nigeria will be certified polio free by June this year, baring any new incidence.

He also said that NEC agreed to improve routine immunization, reduce malnutrition and work to prevent the spread of Lassa fever and the Corona Virus.. Which is currently ravaging parts of China.

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