The nation’s biggest power station, Egbin Power Plc, has said it is being owed over N100bn by the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Plc for electricity generated and fed into the national grid.
The government-owned NBET buys electricity in bulk from generation companies through Power Purchase Agreements and sells to the distribution companies, which then supply to the consumers.
Egbin power plant has been generating far less than its installed capacity of 1,320 megawatts in recent months. It produced as high as 1,085MW on March 15, 2016.
The plant, which is located in Lagos, saw its generation rise to 537MW as of 6.00am on Monday from 488MW on January 29, 2019.
The Group Managing Director, Sahara Power Group, Mr Kola Adesina, said, “We are working at ensuring that we get the 1,320 megawatts in place this February. At the end of this month, Egbin will be able to deploy to Nigeria 1,320MW.”
Egbin is one of the operating entities of Sahara Power Group, which is an affiliate of Sahara Group.
Adesina, who spoke on the sidelines of the 2019 Sahara Power Group Graduate Engineering Programme in Lagos at the National Power Training Institute of Nigeria, said the firm was determined to increase the available generation capacity at Egbin to 1,320MW this month.
He said, “We have more than what is currently being evacuated. We can do today 880MW but the limitation of evacuation is what is restricting us to 520MW to 543MW as we speak.
“We are striving towards ensuring that at the end of this month, Egbin’s installed 1,320MW will be available to Nigerians. However, two restrictions we usually would have are lack of gas supply and transmission evacuation. So, if those two constraints are there, it is going to be impossible for us to deploy the 1,320MW.”
Adesina described the firm’s relationship with gas suppliers as “still one of exploration in terms of looking for ways of ensuring that the required gas is given to us to be able to get the power available to Nigerians.”
According to him, the payment assurance scheme introduced by the Federal Government is helping a great deal to resolve part of the backlog of payments that the Gencos have had to suffer.
“But notwithstanding, the government still owes us over N100bn currently. But the payment assurance scheme is one which we are still looking forward to, to ensure that we get from the system the 100 per cent of revenue that we deserve. But the government is increasingly paying from the payment assurance scheme, which we are benefitting from,” he said.
The Federal Government, in March 2017, approved N701bn payment assurance guarantee by the Central Bank of Nigeria to help Gencos meet the gas payment obligation.
“The payment assurance scheme that the government is implementing is one whereby the gas suppliers are paid first and then we (Gencos) are paid next. They get 100 per cent of their revenue; we get 80 per cent of our revenue from the pool of funds that is made available by the bulk trader,” Adesina said.
According to him, the firm’s plan is to increase Egbin’s capacity by 1,900MW.
“The kind of technology we are deploying now is a combined cycle power plant, which uses less of gas and produces more energy than we currently produce from the existing plants that we have,” he added.
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