By Constance Athekame
The Federal Government says plans are underway to add 204 Mega Watts (MW) of electricity to boost power supply in Ekiti state.
The Minister of Power, Mr Abubakar Aliyu, said this in a a statement by General Manager, Public Affairs, Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), Mrs Ndidi Mbah, on Wednesday, in Abuja.
Abubakar said the Federal Government had begun the construction of a 132 kilovolts transmission line and a 2 by 60 Mega Volt Ampere (MVA) transmission substation and a switching station in the state to raise the capacity by 204 megawatts
The minister, who was speaking at the groundbreaking ceremony in Ado Ekiti, said that the project consisted of a 50 km stretch of 132kV transmission line from Ikere (Ado Ekiti) with a turn in – turn out at Ijesa Isu that terminates at Ilupeju Ekiti.
Aliyu, represented by the Managing Director of TCN, Mr Sule Abdulaziz, said the project
also had a 2X60MVA, 132/33kV transmission substation with four line bays at Ijesa Isu Ekiti with a switching station at Ikere (Ado Ekiti).
”For TCN, this is a very strategic project and we believe it will have massive impact on bulk power transmission in Ekiti and environs.
“The project is part of the many projects being undertaken by the Transmission Company of Nigeria in pursuit of its grid expansion programme.
”Which is in line with Mr. President’s mandate for the expansion of the power sector for sustainable development,” he said.
The minister said that in various transmission regions, nationwide, TCN is equally executing substations and lines projects which are all at various stages of execution.
”’These are clear indications that the Federal Government is not relenting in its determination to ensure that the nation’s power sector receives the desired boost.
“For the residents of Ekiti State and its environs, the additional 204MW capacity to the grid means that more bulk supply will be readily available for offtake by Benin DisCo for its customers in Ekiti and environs,” he noted.
”The substations’ project will also take care of suppressed load in this axis and relieve the Ado-Ekiti substation which has been overburdened to ensure a more reliable electricity supply to the people of Ekiti,” he said.
Aliyu called on Ekiti residents to support government efforts against vandalism of power facilities.
“We must demonstrate our collective responsibility towards preserving the nation’s power equipment in and around our communities.
”So that the government can concentrate on its grid expansion initiative instead of wasting funds replacing vandalized power infrastructure,” he said.
In his remarks, Gov. Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti said the state received only 26MW of electricity from the national grid.
Fayemi represented by his Deputy, Mr Bisi Egbeyemi, said the level of electricity supply was worrisome and grossly inadequate going by the energy need of the population of the state which was estimated at 150 megawatts in 2014.
”Beyond this intolerable level, the quality of the electricity supply is grossly below standard due to non-availability of adequate 132/33KV transmission line.
”And the associated equipment that can help improve the quality of power to be delivered to our people, especially those in the Interior and the rural areas,” he said.
According to him, although, the project is by the Federal Government, when completed, it would complement the plan of the state government at improving the quality of energy supply to the 16 local government areas of the state. (NAN) (www,nannews.ng)
Edited by Abubakar Ahmed/Isaac Aregbesola