By Chioma Onuegbu, Uyo
Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Akwa Ibom state, Mr. Charles Udoh has said that only 40 percent of the electricity generated by the state is currently evacuated by Transmission Company of Nigeria, TCN.
Udoh made this known yesterday in Uyo while fielding question from newsmen on why the local government areas that are to be served by Ekim substation recently commissioned in Mkpat Enin Local Government area were yet to experience improved power supply.
His words, ” It is one thing to generate power, it is another thing to also distribute power. Today state governments are only allowed to generate, they are not allowed to distribute. The Transmission Company of Nigeria, TCN, is still the prime distributor of electricity.
” If you recall during the commissioning ceremony of that power substation, His Excellency the governor hinted that Akwa Ibom state will begin the process of negotiating with the Federal government to be given a license for the distribution of electricity. He mentioned that to the Vice President in public.
“The reason is that today only 40percent electricity generated by Akwa Ibom state is being evacuated by Transmission Company of Nigeria, so we still have 60percent wasted. So it still boils down to getting the Transmission Company of Nigeria in concert with PHED to do what they have to do and do it properly”
The Commissioner explained that if the distribution of electricity rested on states that Akwa Ibom state by now we would be having electricity 24hours because what it generates currently was more than enough to achieve do that.
He noted that the state government has however started the process of injector station to solve the problems with distribution to a large extent.
“One thing is to build a power station and then the other thing is to ensure that the distribution network is done effectively. So we are still in that process but we believe that at some point, one day the Federal government will grant us the request of starting a DISCO.
” If we have a DISCO then we can control what we generate. So we keep appealing to Transmission Company of Nigeria TCN, the Federal government as well to give a helping hand.
“We’ve invested so much in the power Sector. So if we have absolute control to distribute I could tell you we would be able to do what we want to do, how we want to do it and when we want to do it”