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Electricity Theft May Attract N200,000 in Fines



  • Electricity Theft May Attract N200,000 in Fines

Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission is considering a request by one of the existing 11 power distribution companies to increase the penalty for electricity theft from N50,000 to N200,000.

This is coming as the commission has said the indebtedness of Discos is a major reason why they often reject part of electricity allocated to them by the Transmission Company of Nigeria.

According to NERC, most Discos were heavily indebted to the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Company Plc, a development that has adversely affected the sector.

The two issues were contained in the latest minutes of the 17th power sector stakeholders meeting, which was the most recent meeting of operators in the industry.

The document obtained by our correspondent in Abuja on Friday showed that NERC had agreed to look into the request to increase the amount to be paid in fines for electricity theft from N50,000 to N200,000.

An official of Jos Disco also reportedly told the gathering that the firm’s collaboration with the Department of State Services and other security agencies had paid off as electricity theft in Plateau State had drastically reduced.

The official noted that over 200 high profile culprits, including corporate organisations and individuals had been identified and punished in accordingly, adding that the electricity thieves were made to pay the sum of N50,000 as penalty before being reconnected.

The minutes stated that the official “appealed that the penalty be increased to N200,000 to curb the menace of energy theft and noted that plans were underway to extend the initiative to other states within its franchise area.

“NERC agreed that the N50,000 penalty was not enough and promised to look into the matter and report back in the coming week,” the document stated.

A senior official of NERC also reportedly told participants at the gathering that the indebtedness of Discos and network capacity issues were some of the reasons why the power distributors often rejected electricity load allocated to them.

The document stated that the official “highlighted factors that affect the Discos’ ability to off-take more load.

“He (the NERC official) noted that capacity issues on 33/11kV networks and the impact of unpaid balances on the Discos balance sheets were some of the major causes of unutilised power.”

Power distribution companies often reject electricity load sent to them by the TCN despite the poor supply of electricity across the country.

For instance, in March this year, the rejection of electricity by some power distribution companies led to the collapse of about six turbines located in various power plants across the country.

Although the collapse at the time was temporary in some of the turbines, findings showed that the refusal of power load allocation by Discos resulted in unfavourable high frequency in the national power grid.

This development also made the transmission company to ask power generation firms to reduce the quantum of the electricity they were generating during that period.

The commission’s representative at the meeting also stated that NERC would engage NBET to find ways by which the Discos could draw more than their Multi Year Tariff Order allocations whenever unutilised power was available on the grid for their customers or eligible customers.

NERC, according to the minutes, also recommended that the TCN should make appropriate investment in its networks in order to address capacity challenges contributing to load rejection by Discos.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.


Transcorp Hotels Expand into Marketplace, Launches Aura to Connect People, Hoteliers, Others



Transcorp hotel

Transcorp Hotels Plc, on Thursday, announced it has launched a new digital platform, Aura, through which people can book accommodation, restaurants and experiences.

Aura, Transcorp’s first in the alternative accommodation segment, is part of the company’s asset-light model, leveraging technology to deliver true hospitality, exciting experiences, and drive shareholder value.

It’s a new dawn in the hospitality industry! I am thrilled to introduce you to Aura by Transcorp, the digital platform we are using to connect people to quality accommodation, great food, and awesome experiences,” Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Transcorp Hotels Plc. Dupe Olusola said.

For more than 30 years, Transcorp Hotels Plc has been at the forefront of creating a superior guest experience at our locations. Today, our commitment to innovation has offered us an opportunity to extend this beyond the hotel premises,” Olusola added.

The launch of Aura by Transcorp is one of the most significant developments in the company’s history as it seeks to transform the travel and tourism industry in Africa by focusing on three important components of travel, whether for leisure or business — where you stay, what you eat and how you spend your time. With its people-driven hospitality model, Aura is set to revolutionise travel and help remind Africans of our deep history of hospitality.

Speaking on the launch of Aura, Obong Idiong, Chief Executive Officer at Africa Prudential Plc, Aura’s technology partners, expressed his excitement. “Finding the right accommodation when you travel can be incredibly complex. Options available for the right prices are often limited, and travellers sometimes end up with accommodation that taints the travel experience. Transcorp Hotels Plc has been able to fix that with Aura and we are proud to be associated with them.”

To ensure topnotch user experience, we built a solution to drive digital transformation through the adoption of shared living spaces for the Aura business. With an advanced search algorithm powered by artificial intelligence, Aura determines the relevance of locations taking into consideration, the customers’ preferences and requirements to meet them at the point of their needs,” Idiong added.

Priscilla Adeboye, a travel enthusiast and early adopter of Aura, said the global pandemic has pushed international travel down her list. “But I still want to be able to take some time off work or spend a weekend away from home with the family. I have found incredible homes on Aura that meet my need for space and privacy.


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Siemens Energy Nigeria Appoints Seun Suleiman as Managing Director




Seun Suleiman is the New Managing Director of Siemens Energy Nigeria

Mr. Seun Suleiman is the new managing director of Siemens Energy Nigeria, the company announced on Wednesday.

According to the statement released by the energy company, Suleiman will be responsible for the entire management of operations and decisions on business policies and corporate strategy.

Commenting on his appointment, Suleiman said, “It is an absolute honor to lead the business for Siemens Energy Nigeria and I look forward to delivering on the brand’s promise of excellence.

Suleiman joined Siemens Energy in 2014, bringing over 15 years’ experience and deep expertise in the private sector across Europe and West Africa.

The statement said, “He is an accomplished business strategist and success-driven leader with strong business acumen. Suleiman has also been a core member of the executive management team at Siemens Energy serving in roles as Sales Director West Africa – Service Distributed Generation Oil & Gas and Vice President Service & Digital.

“Prior to this, he also held various functional and managerial positions with ABB Ltd UK, ABBNG Nigeria, Schneider Electric Nigeria and Dresser-Rand Nigeria Ltd.

It added that Suleiman was experienced in establishing operational excellence with specific competence in the power, oil and gas sectors.

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FG Reopens Osubi Airport Warri for Daylight Operations




FG Reopens Osubi Airport Warri for Daylight Operations

The Federal Government on Monday said the Osubi Airport in Warri has been reopened for daylight operations.

The Minister of Aviation, Hadi Siriki, disclosed this in a tweet.

The airport was closed in February 2020 over mismanagement and debt allegation involving aviation service providers and airport management.

However, Oberuakpefe Afe, a lawmaker representing Okpe/Sapeie/vaie federal constituency, recently moved a motion for the Federal Government through the ministry of aviation and relevant authorities to reopen the airport for flight operations.

On Monday, Hadi Siriki said “I have just approved the reopening of Osubi Airport Warri, for daylight operations in VFR conditions, subject to all procedures, practices and protocols, including COVID-19, strictly being observed. There will not be need for local approvals henceforth.

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