Nigeria not ripe for full power sector privatisation – NUEE
The National Union of Electricity Employees, NUEE, Western zone, has called for a total reversal of the privatisation of Nigeria’s power sector.
Mr Modupeoluwa Akinola, the Assistant General Secretary of the union in the zone, said the union was convinced that the country was not ready for the privatisation of the sector.
He said in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday in Ibadan that the union was also opposed to the planned privatisation of the Transmission Company of Nigeria.
According to him, the NUEE is demanding full renationalisation of the power sector under the democratic control of a board that includes representatives of workers and consumers.
“Our opposition to the privatisation policy was informed by our understanding and conviction that privatisation will always seek to protect and defend the profit interest of the business owners against the general interest of the people for affordable and regular electricity.
“Let’s crosscheck people that bought power Generation Companies (GenCos) and Distribution Companies (DisCos), are they professionals in the power sector and do they have the financial capabilities needed to run the sector effectively?
“Over N2 trillion of bailout funds that the Federal Government has given to both the DisCos and GenCos on different occasions since the privatisation is not showing, in terms of improvement in electricity supply and better performance.
“All hopes and expectations that privatisation will add value to the life of the people and bring meaningful impact and improvement to the power sector have been dashed.
“One of the basis of our complaint prior to the eventual privatisation of the power sector in 2013 was that we are not ripe for total power privatisation in Nigeria,” Akinola said.
He, however, said Nigeria could start with partial privatisation whereby private owners would be allowed to share with the government, after the reversal of the current privatisation of the GenCos and DisCos.
The NUEE assistant general secretary urged the Federal Government to intervene in the issues of electricity workers welfare, entitlements to old PHCN staff and condition of service in the power sector.
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