Electricity supply shortfalls across Nigeria are expected to worsen at least for the moment following the loss of about 800 megawatts of power from the vandalized Escravos-Lagos Gas Pipeline (ELGP) last week.
The Minister of Power, Professor Chinedu Nebo who blamed vandals for the damage to the vital gas supply facility, said the development came on the heels of similar costly attack on the ELGP with an explosive device at Egwa, near Batan, in Gbaramatu Kingdom, Delta State.
Prof. Nebo, in a statement issued through his Special Assistant on Media, Mrs. Kande Daniel, explained that the exact extent of the damage was being assessed but the impact was the loss of about 200 mmscf/d of gas, equivalent of about 800MW per day of generated power. “It has become clear that the vandals, who perpetrate these acts are intent on crippling the power sector and bringing untold hardship on Nigerians for either political or financial gains or both,” the minister claimed, insisting that federal government was not deterred from its commitment to provide security for its oil and gas, as well as power infrastructure.
According to the minister, the government’s power project has reached a milestone that it can conveniently generate and wheel out over 4,500 MW, but its impact was being curtailed as a result of the lingering gas supply disruptions through vandalism. He therefore appealed to Nigerians to “become more vigilant and report suspicious movements and actions to security agencies for effective protection of public infrastructure for the common good of Nigeria”.
By Olisemeka Obeche