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President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration has to undertake urgent economic reforms to halt the increasing impoverishment of Nigerians, says the IMF in March 2018. Buhari is seeking a second term despite what his critics call his incompetence to deal the challenges confronting Nigeria / Photo: NAN

Buhari promises Nigerians uninterrupted power supply

President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday addressed Nigerians to commemorate the country’s 59th Independence Day anniversary. In a televised broadcast, Buhari spoke on the issue of corruption, insecurity, economy and power supply, among other challenges facing the country. 
 
President Muhammadu Buhari has expressed his confidence that Nigerians would have affordable and uninterrupted electricity supply in not too distant future.

He disclosed this on Tuesday in his independence Day Speech to Nigerians.

According to him, we are resolute in reforming the power sector. In August this year, we launched the Presidential Power Initiative to modernize the National Grid in 3 phases: starting from 5 Gigawatts to 7 Gigawatts, then to 11 Gigawatts by 2023, and finally 25 Gigawatts afterwards. This programme, in partnership with the German Government and Siemens, will provide end-to-end electrification solutions that will resolve our transmission and distribution challenges.

Buhari stressed that the programme would also look to localize the development and assembly of smart meters as well as the operations and maintenance capabilities of transmission and distribution infrastructure.

Global Chief Executive Officer of Siemens, Joe Kaeser and President Muhammadu Buhari shake hands after the signing of the Implementation Agreement for the Nigerian Electrification Roadmap between Siemens and the Nigerian Government on Monday, 22 July 2019 / Photo: Nigerian Presidency/Twitter

 

“I am pleased with the improved inter-agency collaboration between the Ministry of Power and the regulators in the banking and power sectors to ensure that electricity sales, billings and collections are automated and become cashless.

“These initiatives are important to ensure that the technical and collection losses in the sector are substantially reduced. I remain confident that Nigerians will have affordable and uninterrupted electricity supply in the not too distant future”, he said.

“Our efforts to improve the power sector will complement other infrastructure investments projects under the Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund, which is investing in the Mambilla Power Plant project, as well as key economic road infrastructure such as the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, Second Niger Bridge and Abuja-Kano Expressway. The first set of these projects remain on track to be completed by 2022.”

President Buhari in his speech said, “Our journey to food security and self-sufficiency is well underway. We have made remarkable progress in almost all segments of the agriculture value chain, from fertilizers to rice, to animal feed production. We shall sustain these policies to ensure additional investments are channeled, thereby creating more jobs in the sector. We must not go back to the days of importing food and thereby exporting jobs.

“Our commitment to achieving macroeconomic stability and economic diversification, has been underscored by the merger of the Ministry of Finance with the Ministry of Budget and National Planning.

“This combined Ministry has the important mandate to enhance the management of domestic and global fiscal risks; coordinate policies with the trade and monetary authorities; raise and deploy revenues to fund budgeted expenditure; and integrate annual budgets and medium-term fiscal strategies.

“With this, our revenue-generating and reporting agencies will come under much greater scrutiny, going forward, as the new performance management framework will reward exceptional revenue performance, while severe consequences will attend failures to achieve agreed revenue targets”.

Kola Tella

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