Abia Power project’s success can be replicated in Lagos, others — Prof Nnaji

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A former Minister of Power, Prof Barth Nnaji, has said that the newly inaugurated 181 megawatts power plant in Aba, Abia State can be reproduced in Lagos and other states of the country.

Nnaji, the Chief Executive Officer of Geometric Power Limited, the proprietors of the Aba power plant, stated that replicating the project across the country would be an effective method to reduce reliance on the national grid.

“It’s a blotter, an ink approach. So, if you drop ink on a part of a blotter, then it begins to spread. And if you drop it at various places, then eventually the entire blotter will have ink. If I look at the project that we have here, you can do the same thing in Lagos.

“You can do it in Eko, you can do it in Ikeja, you can do it in Kano, you can do it in Kaduna, various places where you have economic activities, industrial activities,” Nnaji said in an interview on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily during the week.

“If you begin to look at the possibility of all of them eventually expanding, then that’s what can help the country. You need to have a tight generation and distribution, not generation that has no direct relationship between generation and distribution.

“It is possible for this to be replicated throughout the country. And it will be a very good way to not have to rely on the national grid power arrangement.”

A new electricity distribution company, Aba Power Limited Electric has started taking electricity from the plant and supplying it to about nine of the 17 local government areas in the South-East state.

According to Nnaji, the power plant’s 188 megawatts capacity is more than the required power needed for the 9 LGAs. He said the capacity is almost two-thirds of what Enugu Electricity is currently serving the five South-East states.

“By the time we finish installing, we have 188 megawatts capacity, that’s almost two-thirds of what Enugu Disco is serving five states in the East. The way to ensure reliability is that you have to have more than just adequate power.

“You have to have more than the requirement of the area. It must be more. So, because you cannot predict peak load for power always, people can just decide to do something and drop power, “he said.

The ex-power Minister believes that with the power plant, industries struggling around the Aba area over power issues would come back to life.

“Some products are made here that can now be seamlessly done. The leather products industry, for example, very big business area, shoes, belts, and handbags can be made from hides coming from the northern part of Nigeria. Some of the things that used to exist in Nigeria can begin to come alive.

“There was such a time when rubber coming from the Midwest would be used to make tyres in Ibadan, in Port Harcourt. Michelin, Dunlop and then brake parts, these bricks. All those things can now be made because of electricity availability.”

Vice President Kashim Shettima inaugurated the geometric power plant in Aba, the industrial hub of Abia State on Monday.

The power plant which was described as the first integrated electricity facility in Nigeria is located in the Osisioma industrial hub of Aba in Abia.