Pay electricity debts, Fashola tells govs

The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Raji Fashola, has called on state governors to support access to electricity through improved power infrastructure in their respective States.
Similarly, the minster has asked them to pay the Electricity Distribution Companies (DisCos) in their states electricity debts incurred.
Fashola made this call at the opening ceremony of the 4th National Council on Power (NACOP) with the theme: “Increasing Access to Electricity through Improved Power Infrastructure’ held in Benin City, Edo state recently.
The minister, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary (Power), Mr Louis Edozien, said: “there are many other things you can do to support access to Power and improve infrastructure, including but not limited to ensuring that your State and Local Governments’ Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) pay their debts and also pay for energy used”.
“It is no longer news that the Distribution Companies (DisCos) are having difficulty funding Distribution Infrastructures.
Therefore, as collective 40% shareholders, we cannot sit back without finding a solution.
The point I wish to make clear, is that all State Governments have a role to play to support the Private Sector”.
Fashola, however, urged each state government to work with the Discos in their states, saying: “This is required to identify the distribution equipment needed to deliver Power, cost implication, make the investment and agree on a recovery strategy’’.
On his part, the Governor of Edo state, Mr Godwin Obaseki said currently, the state has an installed generation capacity of 900MW, made of 450MW from the National Integrated Power Plant (NIPP) and another 450MW from Azura-Edo Independent Power Project.
In the area of distribution, the governor said the state’s experience with the Benin Electricity Distribution (BEDC) is most uninspiring, adding: “To think that we can keep our developmental drive alive without the support of a dependable, affordable and sustainable power supply is still a difficult hurdle to surmount”

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