When the Buhari administration was inaugurated in 2015, the story of Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) was the story of a lack of capacity to transport generated power.
With or without verification, the popular view was that TCN had only a rigid capacity to transport5,000 MW of energy and no more.
With a mandate to improve TCN’s capacity, supported by appropriate policy approvals from Mr. President and budgetary support, that story is changing.
The budgetary support has been most helpful; first in enabling TCN to pay warehouse and shipping companies to recover over 500 containers of goods and equipment left at the port for many years before the Buhari administration.
Secondly these containers and the equipment are now regularly being transported to TCN sites and substations to restart and complete transmission projects that had stalled for years.
TCN’s capacity to transport energy has steadily but surely grown to 7,125 MW as at December 2017.
With more projects heading towards completion in 2018 and beyond, this capacity will increase.
But increased capacity is not the real story.
The real story is that the increase is now orderly, logical, and targeted to address, as a priority, locations where there is existing power or incoming power.
This will ensure that in due course we do not have stories of stranded power again in our conversations about energy production and supply.
Ladies and gentlemen, this is the background that makes today a milestone day in our journey of incremental power, aiming to achieve steady power, and ultimately deliver uninterrupted power.
We gather to receive the 20-year Transmission Expansion Master Plan by Fichtner and participate in a workshop which would enable stakeholders the opportunity to review and improve the report.
With the completion of the 20-year Transmission Expansion Plan, the era of trial and error in the transmission expansion program will be over.
I accepted to open this workshop based on my conviction that the report will clearly bring out the future development of improved power system delivery in Nigeria for the next 20 years; starting from gas supply through the other power supply value chain.
The development of the master plan started in 2016. The objective of the studies is to complement the transmission rehabilitation and expansion program and power sector recovery plan by establishing the long-term generation and transmission plan that meets the forecasted national electricity demand at the lowest economic cost.
I therefore urge the CEOs of all generator and distribution companies to work closely with TCN to ensure that the outcome of the report is carefully reviewed and practical implementation should commence after obtaining formal approval from the relevant agencies.
The NERC and NBET are implored to key into the master plan when procuring additional generation, while the Discos should follow the Transmission plan for developing their own distribution master plan.
This is a new dawn for order and methods in the process of solving the power problem.
On behalf of the President, the Federal Government of Nigeria, I accept this report and commit that our team will do our best to implement its recommendations for the benefit of our people.