The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria on Tuesday declared that the daily demand for electricity by its members had increased to 14,882 megawatts and called on the Federal Government to sell the stranded 2,000MW of power produced by the generation companies to its members.
According to the association, the eligible customers’ policy of the Federal Government that will allow the sale of the stranded 2,000MW of electricity to consumers who are willing to pay should be implemented without delay.
It urged power distribution companies to refrain from opposing the policy since the Discos lacked the ability to evacuate the 2,000MW to the points of need.
The President, MAN, Dr. Frank Jacobs, stated this at a meeting organised by the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, in Abuja.
Jacobs said, “It (eligible customers’ policy) is a welcome development. We have been complaining about power as one of the infrastructure impeding our progress as manufacturers, and when we heard about the government coming up with the eligible customer guidelines, we thought it was a wonderful idea.
“This is because at present, we know that 2,000MW of electricity is stranded and not utilised because the Discos couldn’t buy it. The power is wasting away while we need it. This is an opportunity for us to key in and take that 2,000MW that is wasting.”
He added, “MAN members alone consume 14,882MW per day, and this we cannot get from the grid. Most of them are self-generated. We believe that this eligible customer initiative will make it possible for us to get some of the power that is wasted and convert to our own use.
“Definitely, MAN’s consumption is 14,882MW every day. We are hoping that this 2,000MW will help to augment; it won’t give us all that we need.”
Jacobs urged the Discos not to oppose the policy and asked them to understand that manufacturers needed affordable electricity in order to effectively produce goods for the country.
In his address, Fashola stated that the policy would increase power quality and quantity, adding that the country had about 7,000MW but the Discos could only distribute about 5,000MW.
He said, “I will like to thank you all for responding to our invitation to discuss the possibility of increasing not only access to power for business, but also improving the quantity and quality of power.
“We have a new problem; we have more power than we can distribute. In that context, we cannot continue to talk of lack of power; instead, we must talk about how to connect to the available and unsold power and what it will cost to do so.”