Minister of Power, Dr Lanre Babalola, has said that the major reason why the ministry did not make the required deadline of 6,000mw was largely due to the constraints of gas supply. He said that poor quality of gas, inadequate volume of gas and the vandalisation of pipelines all contributed to the inability of government to meet the deadline of December 2009.
Dr. Babalola, who was speaking at the ministerial press briefing of the ministry at the auditorium at the Presidential Villa yesterday, said that project delivery slip dates, infrastructure inadequacy, funding and operational issues were some other contributing factors.
He said that project slip date was directly responsible for government’s failure, in that the Chevron Phase 1 Pipeline, one of the major pipelines that was supposed to convey enough gas to aid distribution of 7,00mw, had been vandalized and left idle for over a year, and that the expected 6,000mw had been based on the assumption that the pipeline would be completed before the end of the year, but the delivery date of the project had slipped to February this year.
The minister also stressed that his approach to reforms in the ministry was to decentralise the approach to power through the of new small and medium hydro-electric power projects, HEPPs.
The chairman of the event, Prof. Dora Akunyili, the minister for the transparency in the session, saying this was in line with the on going rebranding campaign currently going on in the country. She also advised the minister to look closely into private sector participation as it is very important.