Free electricity amid Covid-19 pandemic is not for all Nigerians – Gbajabiamila

The Speaker of Nigeria’s House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila has revealed that the proposed free electricity amid the Coronavirus pandemic will not be for all Nigerians. 

The Speaker disclosed this after a meeting on Thursday April 16, with top federal government officials, principal officers of the House of Representatives and stakeholders in the power sector.

It was agreed that a joint committee will be setup to work out modalities for the proposed two-month free power supply to Nigerians aimed at cushioning the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Femi Gbajabiamila said the committee would identify Nigerians that would benefit from the free power supply using the number of households connected to the national grid “which will give a way forward for regular power supply to Nigerians after the COVID-19 crisis.”

Tweets shared on his official Twitter handle reads; 

“As part of ongoing efforts to provide free electricity to Nigerians during this COVID-19 lockdown, today the @HouseNGR leadership under my watch met with the power sector stakeholders,the Minister of Power, GMD of NNPC @MKKyari, NERC Chairman, MD of NBET, Heads of all DISCOs… work out the most practical way to effect this palliative.

“With all the useful submissions I have set up a technical committee that will design a workable model that will hopefully target intended consumers throughout Nigeria.Everyone is committed to achieving this objective”

On his own part, the NNPC GMD Mele Kyari stated that the issue of gas supply to the GenCos is critical to power supply in the country. He added that the proposal is workable if the issue of who is to carry the burden of cost and margins in the supply value chain is settled and agreed on.

Mele further disclosed that “note had to be taken of the actual beneficiaries of the two-month free power supply palliative because not every Nigerian falls into the category of the poorest.” He pointed out that the industrial sector should be of concern at the end of the crisis period.

The NNPC GMD said though 100 per cent uninterrupted power supply is impossible because not enough is generated due to the COVID-19 crisis, he assured that gas supply would not be an issue as 100 per cent supply is guaranteed once the debt issue is addressed.

The DisCos assured that they can deliver the mandate as soon as all the details were worked out and agreed on. 

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