POWER: NATIONAL ASSEMBLY COMMENDS NNAJI
By Yemie Adeoye
THE Senate Committee on Power has commended the Minister of Power, Professor Bart Nnaji, for his 'tenacity of purpose and commitment to the common good.'
The commendation was made recently in the Senate during the committee hearing on electric power equipment containers belonging to the Transmission Company of Nigeria, TCN, and the National Integrated Power Project, NIPP, either auctioned by the Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, or seized by the NCS for staying long at the seaports.
The Power Committee Chairman, Senator Phillip Adudah, said that the members are impressed by the way Nnaji has been carrying out his duties since his appointment, noting that he has always honoured every invitation from the committee and answers questions satisfactorily.
Senator Adudah noted that both the public and even workers of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria, PHCN, acknowledge the new direction in the power s sector.
'Even during the recent mandatory maintenance work on five gas plants in the country during which the nation lost 1000Megawatts, almost a quarter of what we generate' , observed the Power Committee chairman, 'electricity supply was almost stable.'
He said that if it were in the past the maintenance work would have resulted in a prolonged national blackout.
Nnaji stated that all the eight TCN containers at the ports have been traced by the Customs Service since the Senate Committee on Power began hearing on the auctioned and seized containers, remarking that only containers belonging to the NIPP were yet to be found as of midday today. Two containers had been located earlier by the Customs.
Responding to the plea by various senators for government agencies to work in harmony to achieve the government's plan for power development , the Minister of State for Finance, Dr Yerima Ngama, revealed that he had last week during a visit to the ports directed the Customs Service to increase the discount on demurrage on the power equipment containers from 70 percent to 90 percent.
'Electricity and security top the priority list of this administration', said Dr Ngama, 'and there is nothing we shall hesitate to do to improve electricity in the whole country'.
Others who were at the hearing included Senator Chris Ngige, who is the Vice Chairman of the Committee on Power; the Minister of State for Power, Architect Darious Dickson Ishaku; and the Customs Comptroller General, Alhaji Dikko.