Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode, yesterday, sought a no objection letter from the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) for the State Government’s Embedded Power Programme. Ambode, who led some members of the State Executive Council, lawmakers and other critical stakeholders to a meeting at the NERC’s headquarters in Abuja, said the embedded power project was designed as his administration’s flagship programme for direct intervention in the power value chain towards achieving a 24-hour power for Lagos. He said the proposed power programme would generate up to 3,000MW of power through accelerated deployment of various power plants in strategic locations across the state by private sector power providers within three to six years.
He noted that Nigerians’ aspiration to create a secured and prosperous nation that is globally competitive would be difficult to achieve without stable power supply. Ambode posited that while efforts are ongoing to resolve the power crisis, it had become increasingly clear that the problems in the energy sector could no longer be left to the Federal Government alone to solve. He said the State Government would issue guarantees in support of the Power Purchase Agreements that will be signed between the distribution companies and the private sector embedded power providers to enhance bankability of the projects. He added that the power generated under the programme would be distributed through Eko and Ikeja Distribution Companies while the state would support in upgrading their distribution infrastructure for embedded power areas in line with NERC guidelines. Responding, the NERC’s Commissioner in charge of Legal License and Compliance, Dafe Akpeneye, promised that NERC would work with the Lagos State Government to ensure the success of the programme. Akpeneye however called Ambode’s attention to some safety issues that concern the state. He noted that a situation where the Commission’s record indicates that there are only 1.2million registered electricity customers in Lagos State is not good when almost all the houses in the state are connected to national grid.