TCN Records Another 4,748MW Power Transmission Milestone

Power Station

NERC moves to reinforce 6,000MW December generation target
Chineme Okafor in Abuja

The Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) on Tuesday disclosed that it had wheeled yet another record peak generation of 4,748 megawatts (MW) of electricity into the national grid.

The Managing Director of TCN’s System Operation/Market Operation departments, Mr. Dipak Sarma, said in a statement from the transmission company in Abuja that the new transmission record was achieved at 21:15hrs on Monday, August 24, 2015.

He, however, added that: “This has been made possible due to a coordinated effort of TCN with the generating companies and the distribution companies.”

Sarma further stated that based on the wheeling capability of the TCN network and implementation of real-time online power optimisation tools which was developed by the TCN National Control Centre (NCC), the distribution companies have been requested to deliver more power to its consumers by connecting more load.

He stated that this development can push the generation to further higher levels given the fact that fuel supply to the generators is stable and adequate.

Meanwhile, the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has moved to reinforce the new generation heights that have been achieved in the sector, as well as push for a December end generation target of 6,000MW.

NERC in this respect held a performance management meeting with generation companies and the TCN to reinforce the capacity of both parties to continue on this new trend.

Chairman of NERC, Dr. Sam Amadi, said the meeting was to first assess extant challenges of the generation companies and TCN, as well as work out acceptable performance management mechanisms to sustain their capacities.

“This is a performance management meeting for largely generators. We had previously had the one for distribution companies. When people look at the power sector in terms of performance, they must look at how much we are generating now.

“They won’t bother to find out how much are we transmitting now or what we are distributing. The problem of the sector since 2010 has been largely project management, while the problem before 2010 was that of modeling on deciding a move from government to private sector utility,” Amadi said.

He further noted: “We have moved from a vertically integrated government owned monopoly to an unbundled and privatised electricity market. Apart from TCN and the NIPPs we could say all the utilities are private- sector owned; we have solved the modeling problem.”

Continuing, he said: “We have set a benchmark of increasing capacity to 5000MW. Today we are actually up to 5,000MW or more but the distribution companies are having issues and problem of receiving power, and then frequency problem.
“NERC is now meeting with the stakeholders to find a way of reinforcing the technical capacity of the grid to solve frequency issue so we can maintain a steady 5,000MW.”

He explained that the real issue in the sector has been performance management, adding, “We have set up a fairly good model that will allow us to create sustainable electricity, but the problem is poor project management.

“It includes corruption which is the beginning. If you do procurement or award contract to those who cannot deliver, there is no magic to that. It is a delivery problem. If we have delivered all the NIPP projects, the capacity of existing generation companies, we would have been doing over 8,000MW today.”

He stated: “We need to develop the skills to project and deliver even as some of them are budget cycle. Think about TCN, it gives a bill of N50 billion, government appropriates N30 billion, and releases N10 billion. There is nowhere in the world where projects can be completed with that kind of budgeting cycle.

So, what we are trying to do in our little way as the regulator in this meeting is to put our fingers on why are we not executing efficiently. Periodically, we need to bring the project managers of these generation and transmission companies; we have had that with the distribution companies and we are now giving them a template designed by consultants to enable them deliver projects on time and effectively.”
“We want to increase our capacity with the possibility of ending this year with 6,000MW or close to that.”






Goke Alabi

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