States in Nigeria explore on New Electricity Act

Chioma Eche, Abuja

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The Nigeria Electricity Act 2023, signed into law on June 9, 2023 by Nigeria’s President Bola Tinubu, has made a significant shift in the Nigerian electricity sector as State government moves to chat ways to tackle challenges in the new Electricity.

READ ALSO: Manufacturers in Nigeria Commend New Electricity Act

This was the highlight of the two-day round table dialogue amongst stakeholders to explore regional and International best practice to implement sub-national electricity markets from countries with relevant electricity market structures, in Abuja the nation’s capital, themed “Electricity Act 202: Implications and Opportunities for State Electricity Markets’’.

According to the Chairman, Nigeria’s Governor Forum, NGF AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq said the forum will continue to work together with Development Partners to implement the electricity Act in the country.

So I hope we will leave here enriched, go back to our various States to see how we can implement the electricity Act, to see how we can interface with the existing structures that are in place now. How the State does relates with the distribution companies’’ he emphasized.

On his part, the Director General of the Nigerian Governor’s Forum, Mr. Asishana Okauru, said the Electricity Act 2023 represents a significant milestone towards achieving a stable, reliable, and efficient electricity supply for all Nigerians.

Mr. Okauru, disclosed that the NGF, is to unveil a support effort that will caption the Nigeria Sub-National Electricity Markets Support Program (NSEMSP).

He said the imitative is going to be a flagship project of the Forum and it will be designed to facilitate the development of sustainable, competitive and diversified sub-national electricity markets in the country.

I am proud to say the NGF has been part of this journey. We have in the course of this worked with a wide spectrum of stakeholders. And this is because we strongly believe that the growth in the electricity sector in Nigeria will inevitably catalyze economic development in our country and positively impact all the other sectors. It will provide a legal framework for private sector participation in the generation, transmission, and distribution of electricity’’.

“We are often told that the amendment of the Constitution and the signing of the Electricity Act 2023 open the sub national electricity market. Our task, therefore, is to facilitate the simplifying of this very complex and highly technical endeavor in a way that both the government and the governed will fully appreciate what is happening, how it should happen and the benefits of it all’’.

“To achieve this, we have held and continue to hold talks with Development Partners and International Donor Organizations who have shown remarkable interest in supporting our efforts in ensuring the success of this initiative’’ he explained

The Deputy Director, the United Kingdom, Nigeria Infrastructure Advisory Facility, UK-NIAF, Mr. Thomas Parscoe, stressed that the organization’s collaboration, is to provide technical advice for Nigeria’s transformation in the Power sector.

Speaking further, Mr. Parscoe, called on State government to make use of opportunity from the event to develop their various States.

So how can we help and what does it have to do with today, over a day and half the Nigeria Governor’s forum and the The United Kingdom Nigeria Infrastructure Advisory Facility UKNIAF have put up an event to set out State level mode that has worked in other countries. What all market participates need to be aware of in their discussion making and what support is available from the international community’’ he said.

The Deputy British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Gill Atkinson, speaks on the micro economy reform of Nigeria saying State governments need to agree on ways to promote and expanded Renewable Integration both on and off the grill.

According to the envoy, the Electricity Act calls for more renewable on and off the grid, in line with the Energy Transition Plan.

The roundtable presents a unique occasion for
Nigerian power and energy stakeholders to firmly endorse their agreement With clean energy and global climate goals and to explore challenges and Solutions to achieve these goals as well as presents opportunities for States to explore pathways to best provide accessible, clean and cost-reflective power to all Nigerians.

In an interview, the Bauchi State Government has expressed its resolve to leverage the Electricity Act 2023 in order to create an electricity sector that is efficient, affordable, and sustainable for the welfare and wellbeing of the citizenry.

The assertion was made by the State Governor, Senator Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed, The governor represented by his Deputy, Mohammed Auwal Jatau, said that the State government will seize the opportunities provided by the Electricity Act 2023 to transform its electricity markets, unlock economic potential, and improve the lives of its citizens.

He noted that the Electricity Act 2023 provides States with a unique opportunity to transform and revitalise their electricity markets as the legislation offers a comprehensive framework that addresses critical issues such as competition, regulation, and private sector participation, in addition to the windows opened for innovation, increased investment, and improved service delivery.

According to him, the theme of the round table, “The Electricity Act 2023: Implications and Opportunities for State Electricity Markets,” is very timely as it is coming against the backdrop of efforts by sub national governments to boost electricity supply for economic growth and development to enhance the quality of living conditions of its citizenry.

Bauchi State, like other states in Nigeria, has its share of challenges in the electricity sector. We understand the need for reliable and affordable electricity to drive our industries, power our homes, and improve the overall welfare of our people. As a responsible government, we have made significant strides in improving access to electricity in rural communities’’.

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