We all know that when such statements as “ Uninterrupted Power Supply” is mentioned, Anyone who has stayed in Nigeria for an extended period of time would eagerly respond that that is more of a dream that a reality, but today the Vice Chairman, Senate Committee on Power and Steel, Senator Chris Ngige, Monday, said concerted efforts by the committee to salvage epileptic power supply in Nigeria had started yielding dividends, following the celebration in Awka, Anambra State, of three consecutive weeks of uninterrupted electricity supply.
Residents of such places as Agu-Awka, Ekeh Awka market, have expressed relief from the air and sound pollution of power generating sets.
Speaking with newsmen in Awka, Senator Ngige, who represents Anambra Central senatorial district, explained that the development was part of his developmental programme for the zone.
He added that the new transmission line at Agu-Awka power station was being test-run and would officially be commissioned in no distant time.
Ngige also said it was part of the IPP programme being carried out by government to alleviate suffering of Nigerians over the epileptic power supply in the country and save small and medium scale industries from closing shops.
He said: “This is part of the IPP programme of government on the power sector. What we have in Agu-Awka power station is a new transmission line that is under a test run and that explains why in the past three weeks, major parts of Awka have been enjoying uninterrupted power supply.
“As a result of this, the load in those areas has reduced and also improved power supply in places as Nibo, Mbaukwu, Umuawulu and Amawbia towns of Awka South local government areas.
“When the issue of IPP and transmission lines were being put in the front burner at the National Assembly, areas such as Onitsha–Nnewi were included as well as Awka –Enugu-Abakaliki.
“So, that of Awka has come on stream and I am happy to tell you that this is one of my constituency programmes for Anambra Central.
“Due to my position as Vice Chairman, Senate Committee on Power and Steel, I was able to network major towns in Anambra State, including the Ala Oji power station in Abia State, and also towns like Onitsha-Ihiala Owerri- Oguta –Aba and Nnewi areas.
“It would be recalled that when the Senate Committee on Power started its oversight functions it was discovered that 21 containers of transmission lines imported by the Federal Government’s contractors were auctioned by the Customs to unknown buyers whose addresses could not be identified.”
Ngige noted “that the probe on power and customs over the auctioned transmission lines had yielded dividend and that is why Awka has witnessed a major boost in power supply.”
He hinted that in less than three months, the improvement in power supply would be more, lamenting that no fewer than 16,000 small scale and over 20,000 medium and large scale industries had closed shop due to failure in the power sector in the South East zone since 1999.