The Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC) is set to boost power supply to Edo, Delta, Ondo and Ekiti, with the signing of an agreement with the Benin Electricity Distribution Company (BEDC) to deliver additional 250MW from the company’s stranded power.
Speaking at the signing ceremony in Lagos, the Managing Director, NDPHC, Mr. Chiedu Ugbo, said the agreement took immediate effect, with the initial project areas being at Ihovbor, Edo State; Asaba, Delta State, Ondo South and parts of Ekiti State.
A statement in Abuja by the Head, Communication and Public Relations of the organisation, Olufunke Nwankwo, noted that Ugbo disclosed that the process leading to the agreement commenced in 2020, with a strong commitment by both parties to the delivery of safe and reliable power to customers of the BEDC’s franchise area.
“Today, we are glad that we are gathered here for the purpose of signing a framework agreement for this collaborations. For NDPHC, the project will enable us to deliver more 250mw of power to customers of BEDC’s franchise areas in Edo, Delta, Ondo, and neighbouring states.
“For BEDC, the project will help them to satisfy its customers with reliable power and achieve an enhancement of its network and infrastructure,” Ugbo noted.
He added that for BEDC’s customers, their homes and industries can now enjoy 24 hours power supply.
Ugbo said for BEDC’s investors and NDPHC shareholders, whom he described as trustees of the Nigerian people, the project would deliver significant value.
He stressed that the NDPHC has been concerned about the insufficient dispatch of its power generation capacity as well as liquidity challenges.
He explained that this meant that only a small proportion of the power dispatched got paid for, while many consumers remain unserved or underserved.
Earlier, the NDPHC boss explained that the journey to the agreement started with initiation of the National Integrated Power Project (NIPP) by the federal government in 2004 as a government funded initiative to stabilise the country’s power sector.
He said as a result of this, the government incorporated NDPHC as a limited liability company to serve as a legal vehicle to hold the NIPP for its states and local governments.
Since then, Ugbo said Nigeria’s electricity supply industry has evolved significantly from the construction of NDPHC’s 10 power plants with combined capacity of over 5,000mw, of which more than 4,000Mw has been completed, to the privatization transactions from which BEDC emerged as one of the 11 distribution companies in Nigeria.
The evolution, according to him, presents the industry players, including NDPHC and BEDC, with unique challenges.
Ugbo said for the distribution firms, the significant capital investments required to upgrade their respective networks has been difficult to raise due to industry challenges.
In her comments, the BEDC Chief Executive Officer, Mrs. Funke Osibodu, said the company aimed at delivering incremental power from the NDPHC underutilised or stranded capacity to several industrial and commercial hubs through multiple solutions across locations in Delta, Edo, Ondo and Ekiti.
She said under the agreement, BEDC and NDPHC would provide end-to-end power solutions across the value chain to deliver a minimum of 250mw of additional power, which will significantly boost supply to the franchise areas.
Osibodu said the collaboration would see the BEDC partner with NDPHC and others to identify and prioritise critical projects to increase power supply while improving on technical and commercial environment.
She noted that the focus will be power supply to certain areas as well as upgrading of all critical distribution infrastructure to the company’s customers.