The Network for Electricity Consumers Advocacy of Nigeria (NECAN) says the sale of gas to Electricity Generating Companies (GENCOs), using international pricing template is not in the best interest of Nigerians and the GENCOs.
The President of NECAN, Chief Tom Akinbogun, said in Abuja on Wednesday that the supply of gas to the GENCOs with global price benchmark was resulting in high cost of generating electricity.
According to him, the inability of the GENCOs to pay for more gas due to the high price of the product is also limiting their capacity to generate more power.
“We wonder why Nigeria will allow price of gas that we need to power the electricity generating plants to be in dollars as if Nigeria is a dollar country.
“Regardless of the international pricing of gas in dollars, Nigeria should price its own product in such a way that it will not be affected by International Monetary Fund, World Bank and Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries pricing template.”
He said the challenge of gas supply should not be a problem to generating electricity for Nigerians, given the high deposit of gas in the country.
Akinbogun said it was very important for government agencies involved in the provision of gas for electricity generation to consider pricing gas in local currency
On new power sector roadmap approved by the Federal Government, Akinbogun said the shortcomings arising from the implementation of the previous road maps necessitated the introduction of a new power plan.
He said it was necessary that government should investigate the factors responsible for the non-implementation or shortcomings in the previous road maps in the sector.
He, however, called for a strong political will on the part of the government and power stakeholders in the implementation of the new power sector plan.
Akinbogun also advised the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission to be firm on its regulatory responsibilities in the sector.
“Each time we point out to NERC that the rule is not being followed, that meters are not being rolled out by DISCOs; that time limit is not being followed; that some DISCOs are not investing in the right way.
“We are supposed to protect the public from being exploited, each time we point the things out to them they just change the rule, instead of making the operators do what the law says.
“The operators are making free money; they are over charging people; they are not applying the rules,“ he said.
On transmission, he advised the Federal Government to consider handing over the transmission aspect of the chain to the private sector, given the privatisation of the sector and the inability to fully wheel electricity generated by the GENCOs.