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National Tribune

Flagging The Conscience Of Truth

Atiku Abubakar Advocates Private Sector Participation in Nigeria’s Power Sector

ByWeb Manager

Mar 1, 2024

Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has emphasized the necessity of opening up Nigeria’s entire power sector, from generation to transmission, for private investments to bolster its growth. Speaking in response to the recent commissioning of the 188MW Geometric Power Plant in Aba, Abia State, Abubakar urged federal and state governments to create a conducive business environment for power sector investors.

In light of the Aba Power Plant’s inauguration, Abubakar commended its establishment and stressed the importance of supporting its owner, Prof. Barth Nnaji, and other potential investors in the sector. He asserted that a business-friendly environment, characterized by reduced setup and operational costs, improved margins, and predictable government policies, is crucial for private enterprises to thrive.

Abubakar further stated that a commitment to a comprehensive metering program for all customers is essential to enable distribution companies to recover full costs for power supplied. Addressing the issue of electricity theft, he advocated for a viable partnership between investors and the government, supported by legislative measures against theft.

Highlighting the need for improved access to credit for power sector enterprises, Abubakar called for government incentives to encourage private sector investments in off-grid solutions. He expressed optimism about the potential of greenfield investments in electrifying rural communities not yet serviced by the grid.

Acknowledging the significance of the Geometric Power Plant, Abubakar applauded the efforts of Prof. Nnaji and his team in overcoming obstacles to deliver the project. He also commended Abia State Governor Alex Otti for staying committed to the project, contributing as a private sector participant.

Abubakar expressed excitement about the project’s realization, emphasizing that Nigeria’s Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) requires increased investments in generation, transmission, and distribution infrastructure. He underscored the low core infrastructure stock in Nigeria compared to international benchmarks, stressing the need for private sector involvement.

As a proponent of private sector-friendly policies, Abubakar outlined his policy document’s focus on private sector-led infrastructure development, emphasizing institutional reforms and innovative financing models. He reiterated the importance of narrowing the infrastructure gap to enhance business competitiveness and promote economic growth.

In conclusion, Abubakar reaffirmed his commitment to prioritizing infrastructure investments and implementing reforms to attract private sector participation, particularly in the power sector, to harness Nigeria’s vast resources effectively.

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