THE ministry of power has recovered from the Nigeria Customs Service, 284 containers of power equipment that had been abandoned at the Lagos ports for 11 years. Chinedu Nebo, minister of power, took delivery of the containers at various bounded terminal ports in Lagos.
The abandoned equipment were meant for delivery at various projects sites across the country and were meant specifically for Abo, Nbese substation, Kano Hadejia transmission substation, Oba-Nnewi substation, Danbata substation, Omotosho, Egbin and Aja lines. Others were meant for Akwa-Ibom 33kva line, Iganga-Ibora substation, Ikorodu Odogunya Ishagamu transmission line and Nsukka-Ayangba lines.
It was also gathered that if properly installed, these equipment would have improved power supply in the country, but they were unfortunately abandoned. Said Nebo at the bounded terminals: “It is my pleasure to address you today. It is a day of joy and gladness at the flag off of this very critical event on the release of 284 containers of electrical equipments and power installations. These equipment which had been abandoned at various bounded terminals in Lagos since 2003, had been held since 7 to 11 years ago. We have inspected some of them, we wish to express our most profound gratitude to the Comptroller- General of Customs, and his staff for making it possible, seeing a day like this.”
The minister said the Customs graciously agreed to release the containers to the defunct Power Holding Company of Nigeria, PHCN, which was represented by the Transmission Company of Nigeria, TCN. Nebo said that virtually all the equipments which were ordered by the PHCN was fully paid for and brought into Nigeria and abandoned.
Recovering the equipment, according to the minister, was part of the transformation agenda of the current administration in the power sector to maximise resources and minimise waste. “These containers could have remained at the port forever and nobody would have bordered, but we saw the need to recover what rightfully belongs to the Federal Government of Nigeria to the benefit of the general public. We have synergy with the Nigeria Customs Services and we are impressed with the understanding of the NCS for their mutual co-operation with the ministry of power,” Nebo said.
New Method of Crude Oil Supply to Refineries
THE Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, has devised a new strategy of supplying crude oil to the country’s refineries in order to reduce incessant cases of crude oil and gas pipelines attacks by vandals. The new strategy involves the supply of crude oil to the refineries through marine vessels.
Andrew Yakubu, group managing director, NNPC, who disclosed this at the Port Harcourt Refining Company in Rivers State, said the scheme had made three refineries as well as the corporation’s strategic business units to transit from cost centres to profit-making ventures.
In a statement issued by Ohi Alegbe, group general manager, group public affairs division, Yakubu disclosed that the supply of crude oil to the refineries using marine vessels was developed as a result of constant attacks on the crude supply pipelines which, over the years, had created serious challenges for the refineries.
On the long-term solution to the problem of pipeline vandalism, the GMD explained that plans were underway to deploy the horizontal directional drilling technology in all the corporation’s pipelines. This, he said, would reduce incessant attacks on the pipelines that had become a huge drag on the operations of the corporation as well as a drain on the national economy.
Yakubu said for NNPC to live up to its full potential, it must adopt a radical change in its operational attitude, adding that the present management was willing to support any SBU with innovative ideas on how to operate more efficiently and grow profit.
Bafred Enjugu, managing director, PHRC, lauded the new strategy of supplying crude to the refinery through marine vessels, and stated that the initiative had improved the company’s profit margin considerably. He explained that the PHRC had commenced a piecemeal intervention in the plant through the replacement of components procured for Turn-Around-Maintenance using in-house resources and local contractors.
No PIB, No Vote in 2015
THE Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria, a civil society group, has warned members of the National Assembly not to contemplate re-election in 2015, if they fail to pass the Petroleum Industry Bill, PIB, into law. Godwin Ojo, executive director of the group, issued the warning on Saturday, shortly after a public awareness programme on the PIB and the need for transparency and accountability in the petroleum sector.
Ojo said that the lawmakers were at the National Assembly at the behest of the electorate, adding that the group would not support the re-election of the present set of federal legislators in next year’s election, if the PIB was not passed into law. Explaining that the National Assembly had been disappointing in the handling of the PIB, Ojo alleged that the lawmakers had yielded to the blackmail by oil companies that did not want the bill to be passed into law.
“We, as civil society groups and as community members, are disappointed by the National Assembly which is playing politics with people’s lives. The PIB has been on the desk of our lawmakers since 2009 and another lawmaking session is coming to an end. Yet, the passage of this bill appears not to be in sight. We are very worried that the National Assembly is caving in as a result of the blackmail by oil companies who are all out, lobbying against the bill in order to kill it. While we encourage the lawmakers to quickly consider and pass the Petroleum Industry Bill, we want to sound a note of warning that no passing of PIB, will translate into no return to the hallowed chambers in 2015. This call has become important because the lawmakers are at the behest of the electorate. So, we will ensure that during elections, the non-passage of the PIB into law will become an electioneering issue and anyone who has sat in any of the hallowed chambers and refused to give support to the PIB will be denied votes by the electorate,” he said.
Ojo disclosed that his group would be staging a peaceful protest in Abuja against the non-passage of the PIB on August 4, 2014. He added that the protest would also serve as an opportunity to draw attention to the non-implementation of the United Nations Environment Programme report on the clean-up of Ogoniland. He decried the federal government’s silence on the UNEP report, describing it as a denial of Ogoni people’s right to existence. “We strongly believe that the government should implement the UNEP report and ensure that $1bn clean-up funds recommended by the UNEP report be set up immediately.”
Compiled by Anayo Ezugwu
— Aug. 11, 2014 @ 01:00 GMT