VICE President Namadi Sambo yesterday read the riot act to all the contractors handling power transmission and distribution projects under the National Independent Power Projects (NIPP), saying that any of them who fail to meet 50 per cent completion of his contract by June, 2012 would have the contact terminated and re-awarded to a new firm.
Sambo, who is also Chairman of the Board of Niger Delta Power Company (NDPC) the supervisor of the NIPP projects, expressed worries over the poor performance of contractors that handle power transmission projects across the country, warning that the board would no longer approve any new projects.
Henceforth, he said, the contractors must concentrate on the urgent delivery of existing contracts.
The Vice President said at the 21st Board Meeting of the Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC) that “any company which could not reach 50 per cent completion by June of its contract would be terminated and given to another company that can deliver on the project.”
He challenged the supervising consultants and NDPHC Management to ensure that projects that are not 50 per cent delivered by June this year “be terminated and reassigned to a performing contractor.”
Sambo further directed the management of NDPHC to make a list of delinquent contractors and consultants and that any of them that could not complete its project by the end of the year would be sanctioned.
The board noted the current low supply in gas and urged the Group Managing Director of the NNPC Mr. Austin Oniwon and the Managing Director, National Gas Company of Nigeria to work with Chevron and all other oil companies to ensure availability of gas, in order to meet government planned programme for power delivery to the nation
The board also called for a meeting of all governors of South-South zone including governors of Imo and Abia states and other stakeholders to discuss issues bordering on problems associating with right of way, vandalism and security need for projects timely delivery.
The Board gave approval for the payment of P. B Power/Jiyoda invoices transferred by the Power Holding Company of Nigeria to NDPHC in respect of project consultancy services for the construction of Alaoji phase 1 power plant. It also approved the Interim Operations and Maintenance Services for the 451MW Sapele power station in favour of Messrs Marubeni Corporation and Olorunsogo power station.
Generally, the meeting blamed the current drop in power supply within the country on problems of gas supply to power plants especially the newly completed ones, the maintenance of power supply facilities by Chevron, the shutting down of Oben station, problem of gas supply line from Escravos and the yet to be completed work on the Gbaramatu as well as little problems with some of the plants.
Governor of Delta State, Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan told journalists at the end of the board meeting that the government is registering progress with the Olorunsogo power plant where six of the units were down but now been revived. He also added that some of the units at the Sapele power plant now have some of its units completed and waiting for gas supply to fire them.
According to Uduaghan, “the Olorunsogo completed units can generate 450mw. Sapele two units when completed can generate 250mw. Unfortunately we have challenges with gas supply affecting these two plants just as it is also affecting other plants across the country, so we looked at the issue of gas supply, fortunately the Group Managing Director (GMD) of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and other top officials were here. There is a strategic committee that has been put up by Mr. President to look into the issues of gas supply and fast track processes that will ensure we have more gas for utilization by our various plants, both the ones under NIPP and PHCN. From the strategies they presented, hopefully there will be improvement in the supply of gas to these various plants.
“Another challenge we are still having is the transmission lines. At this meeting, the chairman who is the Vice President directed that all the contractors must have performed at least 50 per cent of their jobs by the end of June this year. Any transmission and distribution contractor that has not done so by June this year will have its contract given to a performing contractor so there will be a review at the end of June of all the transmission and distribution contracts and the ones that are not performing will obviously be dropped and given performing contractors. Hopefully there will be improvement in the next few months and definitely by the end of the year we would have improvement.”
Minister of Power, Prof. Barth Nnaji also said that President Jonathan has, as part of the ways of accelerating the supply of power to Nigerians, ordered the convocation of a retreat by all stakeholders in the power sector for March 20, 2012. The retreat, he said, “would x-ray and bring out final solution to the gas supply and other allied problems militating against the steady power supply as the government would want to see improved and progressively steady supply in the country.”