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Northern elite blame Discos for outage in Nigeria

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Northern elite, under the umbrella of the Arewa Research and Development Project (ARDP), have lamented poor power supply in the country, saying that the provision of inadequate electricity by the Distribution Companies (DisCos) has crippled the manufacturing industry in Nigeria.

The ARDP and officials of Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) held an enlightenment programme in Kaduna where the Managing Director of the company, Usman Gur Muhammed, as Guest Lecturer, spoke on the state of power supply in the country.

A communique issued at the weekend and signed by the ARDP Chairman, Communique Drafting Committee, Prof. Idris Bugaje, said that industries could not thrive without power, jobs could not be created without industries and insecurity rises without jobs.

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According to him, “the challenges of job creation, wealth generation and insecurity currently bedeviling Nigeria cannot be addressed without adequate power supply,” pointing out that
“Nigeria per capital energy consumption is 33W, which is grossly inadequate when compared with South Africa’s 270W, Egypt’s 400W and EU’s 1,000 W”.

Bugaje said: “Northern Nigeria per capital energy consumption is about 10W, which is only one-third of the national average.”

Meanwhile, the communique at the end of deliberation by the Northern group and TCN officials recommended that “the distribution companies (DisCos) must be recapitalised and if they lack capacity, the whole process should be reversed to allow government recover and rehabilitate the distribution infrastructure and decide on the next steps.”

“Federal Government should ensure proportionate representation on Board of Directors of DisCos to represent its 40% shares.

“All electricity consumers should be metered and estimated billing stopped immediately. The meters should be accessible and available even in supermarkets for all to buy and certified installers allowed to fix them. Electricity pricing should be based on cost-reflective tariff,” the communiqué said.

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