News / Africa

Canadian Company Assumes Control of Nigerian Electrical Grid

An official of Nigeria Power works on power lines in Lagos, Nigeria, July 22, 2011. An official of Nigeria Power works on power lines in Lagos, Nigeria, July 22, 2011.
x
An official of Nigeria Power works on power lines in Lagos, Nigeria, July 22, 2011.
An official of Nigeria Power works on power lines in Lagos, Nigeria, July 22, 2011.
Heather Murdock
ABUJA — A Canadian power company is set to take over operations of Nigeria’s government-owned power transmission company next week. Energy officials say this is a major step towards privatizing the energy industry - a move they hope will end the power shortages that cripple the Nigerian economy. 

Nigerian officials say a lot of the country’s power is lost in transportation. Dilapidated and mismanaged electrical grids waste about a forth of Nigeria’s electricity, which is roughly six times less than what the country needs to grow industry and power homes.

Right now, most people here do not have access to electricity. Those who do have it often only get a few hours of power a day. Anyone who can afford a generator has one.

The director general of the Energy Commission of Nigeria, Abubakar Sani Sambo, says beyond hurting industry and public health, electricity in Nigeria is a security issue. He says some young people turn to violence because they are unemployed and Nigeria needs more electricity to create more jobs.

“You also have darkness that in the night perpetrates evil," Sambo stated. "So security problems are being heightened by lack of power.”

Sambo says privatizing the power industry in Nigeria is essential to getting more electricity into businesses and homes.

On July 30, Canada’s Manitoba Hydro International takes control of the Transmission Company of Nigeria, a state-owned entity. It is a move industry regulators call a “critical milestone in the road map to power sector reform.”

Johnson Isaac Ondoma, an environmental consultant for both private and public builders in Abuja, says corruption and lack of rule of law in Nigeria has a way of destroying well-intended government programs.

However, he says that does not necessarily mean that this plan will fail. In the past decade, the privatization of the telecom industry has made mobile phones affordable enough for most Nigerians.

“If, in the long run, there is total privatization and the company runs independently we will get it right. We’ve seen it in the telecommunications industry, when telecommunication was deregulated,” said Ondoma.

The Energy Commission's Sambo, says privatization is a difficult process because it meets resistance from public energy employees - 40 percent of whom could lose their jobs in the coming years, as more private companies take control of the power business.

Regulators say Manitoba has three years to make the company “technically and financially efficient” and the Canadian company is required to provide training for staff already in place.

You May Like

At International AIDS Conference One Goal, Many Paths

The 12,000 delegates attending 20th International AIDS Conference in Melbourne have vastly different visions about how to eradicate disease More

Disasters May Doom Malaysia’s Flag Carrier

Even before loss of two jets loaded with passengers on international flights, company had been operating in red for three years, accumulating deficit of $1.3 billion More

Afghan Presidential Vote Audit Continues Despite Glitches

Process has been marred by walkouts by representatives of two competing candidates, Abdullah Abdullah and Ashraf Ghani More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Douglas Duncan from: UK
July 27, 2012 1:20 PM
Nigeria Energy Awards seeks to address and recogonise companies in the fore front of Energy Efficeny in Nigeria.

www.nigeriaenergyawards.org


by: Linda Pedulla from: Canada
July 26, 2012 6:03 AM
L & M Pedulla Electric is a family owned and operated company, the owners and employees of the company truly believe in taken pride in there work, and believe that family brings added value to the customers


by: PEDUS from: AUSTRALIA
July 25, 2012 4:13 PM
This is a step in the right direction because national security and economic growth is inextricably linked to availability of the needed infrastructure. There is no doubt that efficient and sustainable power generation and distribution to all households and businesses in Nigeria would be a welcome relief to households and capable of spurring economic growth through enhanced investor confidence.


by: Anonymous
July 25, 2012 1:26 PM
The picture here looks prety much like the one from Hanoi,Vietnam.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Agei
X
Elizabeth Lee
July 20, 2014 2:36 AM
Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Chicago’s Argonne Lab Developing Battery of the Future

In 2012, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science awarded a $120 million grant to a new technology center focused on battery development - headquartered at Argonne National Laboratory in suburban Chicago, Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there scientists are making the next technological breakthroughs in energy storage.
Video

Video In NW Pakistan, Army Offensive Causes Massive Number of Displaced

Pakistan’s army offensive in North Waziristan has resulted in the large-scale displacement of the local population. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from northwest Pakistan where authorities say around 80 percent of the estimated 1 million internally displaced persons [IDPs] have settled in Bannu district, while much of the remaining 20 percent are scattered in nearby cities.
Video

Video Kurdish Peshmerga Force Secures Kirkuk, Its Oil

The Kurdistan regional government has sent its Peshmerga troops into the adjacent province of Kirkuk to drive out insurgents, and to secure the area's rich oil fields. By doing this, the regional government has added a fourth province to the three it officially controls. The oil also provides revenue that could make an independent Kurdistan economically strong. VOA’s Jeffrey Young went out with the Peshmerga and filed this report.
Video

Video Malaysia Reeling: Second Air Disaster in Four Months

Malaysia is reeling from the second air disaster in four months involving the country’s flag carrier. Flight 340 vanished in March and despite an extensive search, no debris has been found. And on Thursday, Flight 17, likely hit by a surface-to-air missile, came apart over eastern Ukraine. The two incidents together have left more than 500 people dead. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Kuala Lumpur.
Video

Video Diplomatic Crisis Grows Over MH17 Plane Crash

The Malaysia Airlines crash in eastern Ukraine is drawing reaction from leaders around the world. With suspicions growing that a surface-to-air missile shot down the aircraft, there are increasing tensions in the international community over who is to blame. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Undocumented Immigrants Face Perilous Journey to US, No Guarantees

Every day, hundreds of undocumented immigrants from Central America attempt the arduous journey through Mexico and turn themselves over to U.S. border patrol -- with the hope that they will not be turned away. But the dangers they face along the way are many, and as Ramon Taylor reports from the Rio Grande Valley in Texas, their fate rests on more than just the reception they get at the US border.
Video

Video Scientists Create Blackest Material Ever

Of all the black things in the universe only the infamous "black holes" are so black that not even a tiny amount of light can bounce back. But scientists have managed to create material almost as black, and it has enormous potential use. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Fog Collector Transforming Maasai Water Harvesting in Kenya

The Maasai people of Kenya are known for their cattle-herding, nomadic lifestyle. But it's an existence that depends on access to adequate water for their herds and flocks. Lenny Ruvaga reports for VOA, on a "fog collector."

AppleAndroid