- 14 Power Plants Shut, Hydro Generation Improves
Electricity generation from the nation’s hydropower plants has recorded significant improvement, offsetting the losses caused by last week’s pipeline fire that left six gas-fired power plants, including Egbin in Lagos, shut down.
The number of power plants idle on Friday was 14 out of 28, according to the latest data obtained by our correspondent on Sunday from the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing.
Last Tuesday night, the nation’s power grid suffered a total collapse caused by the fire incident on the Escravos-Lagos Pipeline System, which supplies gas to some power plants and feeds the West Africa Gas Pipeline System.
The nation generates most of its electricity from gas-fired power plants, while output from hydropower plants makes up about 30 per cent of the total generation.
Total electricity generation, which stood at 3,573.1 megawatts as of 6am on Monday, January 1, fell slightly to 3,539.1MW on Tuesday and 3,517.5MW on Wednesday (the morning after the grid collapse).
Unutilised generation capacity occasioned by gas constraint rose to 3,133.3MW as of 6am on Friday from 1,934.4MW on Tuesday.
Generation from Kainji, Jebba and Shiroro hydro plants, which stood at 270MW, 230MW and 130MW, respectively as of 6am on Tuesday (before the grid collapse), rose to 339MW, 445MW and 428MW on Wednesday.
As of Friday, January 5, Kainji, Jebba and Shiroro generated 411MW, 440MW and 442MW, respectively, translating to about 36.7 per cent of the total national generation of 3,517.5MW.
Electricity generation from Egbin, the nation’s biggest power station, fell from 561MW as of 6am on Tuesday to 122MW on Wednesday. The plant did not generate any megawatts of electricity on Thursday and Friday due to the fire outbreak on the gas pipeline.
Five other power plants, Omotosho I and II located in Ondo State, Olorunsogo I and II, and Paras Energy in Ogun State, were also shut down due to the fire outbreak.
As of 6am on Tuesday, Omotosho I and II generated 141.1MW and 87.2MW, respectively; Olorunsogo I and II produced 193.3MW and 103.2MW; while Paras generated 67.8MW.
Lagos Lowers Land Use Charges, Waives N5.75bn in Penal Fees
Lagos Reduces Land Use Charges to Pre-2018 Fees
In a bid to ease economic burden and support growth across Lagos State, the commercial hub of Nigeria, the state government has reduced land use charges and other penal fees.
Dr. Rabiu Olowo, the Commissioner for Finance, disclosed this on Wednesday in a statement titled ‘Speech delivered by the honourable commissioner for finance at a press briefing on the 2020 new land use charge law.’
Lagos State Government said land use charges and other fees are revised down to pre-2018, adding that the state will henceforth uphold the 2018 method of valuation.
Accordingly, the state waived the penal fees for 2017, 2018 and 2019. Translating to N5.75 billion in potential revenue.
“In addition to this, there is also a 48 per cent reduction in the annual charge rates,” Olowo stated.
He further stated that owner-occupied residential property was lowered from 0.076 per cent to 0.0394 per cent; industrial premises of manufacturing concerns, from 0.256 per cent to 0.132 per cent; and residential property/private school (owner and third party, from 0.256 per cent to 0.132 per cent.
Olowo added that commercial property — used by the occupier for business purposes — was reduced from 0.76 per cent to 0.394 per cent; and vacant properties and open empty land, from 0.076 per cent to 0.0394 per cent.
While the annual charge rate for agricultural land was revised down by 87 per cent from 0.076 per cent to 0.01 per cent.
FG Spends N2.37 Trillion on Petrol Importation in 13 Months, Says NNPC
NNPC Sells 950.67m Litres of Petrol In May
The Federal Government imported petrol valued at N2.37 trillion into the country in thirteen months, according to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).
On Wednesday, the corporation said revenue from the sales of white products stood at N2.39 trillion between May 2019 and May 2020.
It, therefore, stated that petrol contributed about 98.84 percent or N2.37 trillion of the total sales generated during the period.
In May, the corporation said it realised N92.58 billion from the sale of petrol. NNPC said the product was sold through its subsidiary, the Petroleum Products Marketing Company (PPMC).
According to the May 2020 version of the corporation’s Monthly Financial and Operations Report quoted by Kennie Obateru, the Group General Manager, Public Affairs Division, NNPC, 950.67 million litres of white products (only petrol) was sold by PPMC in the month.
This, he said “comprised 950.67 million litres of Premium Motor Spirit, popularly called petrol, only, with no Automotive Gas Oil or Dual Purpose Kerosene.”
“There was also no sale of special product in the month.”
Nigeria continues to depend on importation for its petrol supplies due to local dilapidated refineries that have failed to operate at optimal level despite billions of dollars budgeted for maintenance yearly.
Experts have said petrol importation is one of the main reasons the nation’s foreign reserves continues to struggle, especially at a period when oil prices are trading at a record low with broadly low demand for the commodity.
Nigeria’s foreign reserves is presently hovering around $36 billion, down from its record high of $45 billion attained in June 2019. The decline has also impacted the ability of the Central Bank of Nigeria to support the Nigerian Naira.
The Naira has been devalued by 15 per cent in the last four months and was recently adjusted from N361 a US dollar to N381 per US dollar on the Investors and Exporters forex window to ease the pressure on the reserves.
Amaechi Urges National Assembly to be Careful Probing Chinese Loans
Amaechi Says China is Becoming a Bit Apprehensive About Giving Money to Nigeria
The Minister of Transportation, Chibuike Amaechi, on Tuesday said he specifically urged the National Assembly to be careful about the ongoing probe of Chinese loan agreements.
The minister who appeared in a live television programme with the Minister of Justice/Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, said China is becoming a bit apprehensive about releasing additional loans to the country.
He said, “You know, I specifically urged the National Assembly to please be careful about this probe on the loan agreements. It is because we are trying to make an application for the Port Harcourt Maiduguri rail.
“If nothing else is happening, you know that our brothers are already saying that we don’t want to do any rail project in the South-East.”
He added, “Now that we are planning to say that they should give us some loan for us to construct Port Harcourt to Maiduguri, and we are about to go to cabinet for approval, you are now shouting these terms are bad, Chinese people are wicked.
“How will they give you the money? I have documents to the effect that we are getting signals that they are becoming a bit apprehensive on whether we are doing this because we don’t want to pay them back.”
Amaechi said the nation must learn to pay back procured loans, saying the $500 million loan obtained for the Abuja-Kaduna railway was presently being serviced.
He said, “Nobody has signed out anything. A sovereign nation is a sovereign nation; nobody can recolonise us. We must learn to pay our debts and we are paying, and once you are paying, nobody will come and take any of your assets.”
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