Nigerian government has allocated NGN340 billion for the execution of various National Integrated Power Projects (NIPP) in the country. Totally NGN300 billion had been approved for the national independent power projects (NIPP), and the remaining NGN40 billion would be an intervention fund. Funds will be awarded to the project in pipeline from 2006 till 2009.
Nigerian Minster of Power, Dr. Riliwan Babalola disclosed that several power stations would be built. These include Ihovbor power station benin, Edo state, with the capacity of 4 x 125 megawatt (MW), Calabar power station, Cross River state, with the capacity of 5 x 125 MW, Egbema power station, Imo state, with the capacity of 3 x 125 MW, Gbarain power station, Yenagoa, Bayelsa state with the capacity of 2 x 125 MW, and Sapele power station, Delta state, with the 4 x 125 MW capacity.
Babalola expressed optimism that the gas shortage will soon end, with the completion of some major gas projects like Afam 6, own by Shell’, Babalola added that his ministry would look at hydropower to generate additional icity. He said, i don’t think there is any state in the North which does not have a dam. The issue now is that these dams have been lying there for more than 20 years without being annexed into generating electricity.
Babalola stressed that power stations needed at least one billion standard cubic feet of gas supply per day to be able to deliver the 6000 MW targets by December, 2009. Babalola said that the major problem facing the sector is gas as it only get about 400 to 500 standard cubic feet of gas per day from the Nigerian Gas Company Limited which affects its output distributions and generations.
If it is our gas that goes to Spain and positive things are happening to their electricity, questions are needed to be asked. ‘If we can build a gas pipeline from Nigeria to Ghana and there is no gas pipeline from Port Harcourt to Abuja , it shows that something is wrong. Babalola said.
Babalola said that his ministry would soon undertake a survey of all dams in the country that are currently not being utilized for power generation. The intention will be co-opt them into strategies for improved electricity supply in the country. He further continued that diversification in the power sector had become necessary in order to expand the scope of electricity generation in the country. We are going to diversify by using what we have to get power.
The ministry will work on existing Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) facilities to generate about 1000 MW more, which would be lumped with the current available capacity of 4000 MW and1000 MW from Independent Power Projects (IPP) to bring total output to 6000 MW”, Babalola disclosed.
Babalola said that government investment in the power sector would cut across generation, transmission and distribution to achieve the 6000 MW target. Babalola further noted that gas was critical to the success of power generation in the country, saying that although Power Holding Company of Nigeria PLC currently has the capacity to generate 4000 MW; lack of gas had worked against the energy firm.