BPE: Privatisation of NIPP begins January 2014

By The Rainbow

The Director-General of Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), Benjamin Ezra Dikki, has said that the privatisation of the 10 National Independent Power Project (NIPP) will be flagged off in January 2014.

He said that with finalization of the  privatisation of the 10 successor companies of Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN), the NIPP was the next in line.

Dikki spoke while  signing the share purchase agreement of the Afam Generation Company and Kaduna Distribution Company on Monday in Abuja.

According to the BPE boss,  once the approval of the technical committee of the National Council on Privatisation (NCP) was secured and the financial opening of the NIPPs concluded, the power sector would have been completely  left in the hands of the private sector.

Dikki also said the Federal  Government could still invest in power as had been contemplated for  Mandilla Hydro Dam, Shiroro and  Zungeru.

He said; 'But of course that does not preclude government investments in the power sector as has been contemplated for  Mandilla Hydro Dam, Shiroro and  Zungeru. Once a sector is completely liberalised, government can also be a player in that sector because there is no hindrance in government participating in a sector that is liberalised. So, government will continue to play a role in the power sector until we reach a situation where we have sufficient power to drive the economic growth of this country.'

'Government will  create an enabling environment for the private sector to show their ingenuity and become the drivers of economic growth. If you have seen the few sectors in which reforms have taken root, it has proven  clearly that once government creates an enabling environment, the private sector will do more than the government can.'

'If you look at the ports reforms, since government handed over the ports to the concessionaires,  government has not invested a dime.

'And these ports concessionaires have continued to invest in infrastructure in the ports activities. Since government reformed the telecoms sector, government does  not have to invest a single naira and the telecoms sector has been growing in leaps and bounds. Since the handing over of the power holding successor companies, we are beginning to see some improvements. Somebody called me that he was surprised to see one of the successor companies' staff come to survey what was their power needs. These are things that did not happen when these companies were run by government. And I want to assure you that if you exercise a little patience, you will see a tremendous improvement in the power provided to the Nigeria public.  So, today is the  concluding leg for the privatisation  of the successor companies of PHCN.

'You are also aware of the NIPP plants.  We have also reached an advanced stage in privatising them. In January, we shall be holding a financial bid opening after we have got the approval of the technical committee of the National Council on Privatisation for the 10 successor companies and the 10 NIPP companies.'