Nigeria will need an estimated 12,000 mega watts of electricity to achieve steady power supply.
The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Power, Ambassador Godknows Igali, told Channels Television in an interview that the Federal Government would need to bridge the funding gap in the power sector to make it possible.
He was, however, quick to point out that that there is already an improvement in the supply of electricity because of the availability of gas for distributing plants.
He remarked that Nigerians were unfair in criticising the power sector, pointing out that after privatisation, the sector required huge long-term investments for results. Reacting to criticisms that the N2.7 trillion spent on the power sector since 1999 was not properly utilised, Igali said that the sector was capital-intensive.
“I don’t have to defend what has been spent blindly because I was not even there; but, from a technical point of view, those amounts are not outside the range of what should have been spent because a gas turbine, the smallest one, costs N40 billion.
“A transformer, which is the smallest unit in the power sector, the smallest size is N2.5 million, while the huge transmission transformer goes for as much as N1 billion. So, these are things that are really capital intensive; it is one of the most expensive sectors in any part of the world. But, go to other sectors like road construction and so on; you will see that government has not spent less because these are huge capital expenditures,” he explained.
He stated that as part of efforts to increase generation, the Ministry was diversifying its apparatus and championing the development of solar power, adding that one megawatt of electricity could be generated from one hectare of land.