By Nse Anthony-Uko
The federal government on Monday commenced moves to improve electricity supply across 15 communities in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) with the installation of two transformers of 200MVA transmission capacity at Katampe and Apo areas of Abuja.
Speaking at the commissioning of the 100MVA transformer at Katampe substation, the Minister of State II, Mr Hassan Suleiman Zarma, said the project is worth $2.3 million (about N59.7m), adding that the initiative became imperative as power generation continues to rise above 7,000 megawatts (MW).
Zarma who represented the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola at the commissioning and at the 24th power sector meeting hosted by TCN at Katampe, said the ministry is meeting with Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) on how to evacuate the stranded 2,000MW under the new Customer Eligibility Rule of the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC).
He added that government is working on a Distribution Expansion Programme to construct infrastructures of 2,000MVA capacity to evacuate the stranded power.
The minister also said through the Government of Japan, power capacitor banks worth $10 million are being installed at Apo and Keffi substations and that “it will significantly improve the quality of power supply from Apo substation.”
The Project Manager of MBH Power Ltd, contractor for the Katampe project, Mr Rakesh Manapatra said they worked 24 hours to meet the timeline given by TCN as the firm had said not meeting the timeline would mean transferring the work to TCN engineers for completion.
The new Managing Director of the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), Mr Usman Gur Mohammed at the commissioning ceremony at Katampe substation, said the 100MVA was added to the old 120MVA capacity while another was installed at Apo which had 190MVA to improve supply across over 15 towns including Gwarinpa, Maitama and the airport.
“With this installation, the capacity has been raised to 220MVA. Similarly, the Apo 132/33kv substation has been raised from 190MVA to 290MVA,” Mohammed noted.
Recall that Mr Mohammed whose one year tenure elapsed on February 1, handed over to the Head of System Operator, TCN, Engr. Maman J. Lawal a situation which some senior management of the company had resented.
Sources at TCN said Mr Mohammed’s appointment as substantive Managing Director came at the weekend prompting his resumption at TCN.