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‘We Have Improved Power Supply’ – Babatunde Fashola Boasts

The Minister of Power, Works, and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, says the Muhammadu Buhari administration has improved power supply in the last three years.

Fashola made the declaration while appearing on a ChannelsTV programme Sunday, noting that though the government has yet to completely fulfil the promise made in 2015, even those criticising the present administration would not argue the improvement in the power sector.

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“We set very high aspirations and we will get there, and what I am saying today is that we have improved on what we met, and that is unarguable and unimpeachable,” Fashola said.

“And we have done so in shorter time and with less resources. Let their (the critics) sympathisers continue to weaponise the challenges they created but the truth is that we are the ones solving the problems that we met.

“That’s why we sought the office because we think we are better than them and we have proven that we are.”

Calling for more investment in power from both the government and private sector, Fashola revealed that upon his assumption of duty in 2015, he set out a clear agenda for the ministry that it would first seek to achieve incremental power, saying it was already yielding results.

“We are producing more power than what we met; we are transmitting more power than what we met, and we are distributing more power than what we met,” he said.

“I met 4,000MW; we have added three (thousand) more – 1,000MW per year. Our raw rate is a thousand megawatts (MW) every year.

“Since I came, we have completed projects they didn’t complete, we have evacuated 800 containers they left at the port; that’s mediocre administration… they didn’t administer a government.”

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The minister, however, admitted that the numbers were not as important as the experience of Nigerians who were the consumers.

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“Nigerians will tell you, on the average, that they are spending less money on buying diesel, they are spending less money on buying petrol for their generators.”

Fashola stressed that states like Kebbi were getting about 24 hours of power supply because there was a local arrangement in place to ensure people pay for the electricity consumed.

He pointed to the report from some residents of Maiduguri, the Borno State capital recently that the government should reduce the “24-hour” power supply in their area because they cannot afford to pay for it.

On power supply off the national grid, he said, “We have been innovative, we are targeting market, we are targeting universities, we are promoting individuals and businesses to get their own energy under the existing regulations that we have championed.

“So, we have a mini-grid policy … and I see a very clear path to solving this problem. If I didn’t, I wouldn’t remain.”

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