Nigeria’s minister of power, Chinedu Nebo said on Monday that thevandalisation of gas pipelines responsible for the loss of about 1,600 megawatts of electricity, has political undertone.
Nebo said this while briefing State House correspondents on the outcome of joint meeting of the Niger Delta Power Holding Company, NDPHC and National Council on Privatisation, NCP.
“It is important to note that with regard to the busting of gas pipelines and vandalism of the pipelines that bring gas to the generating plants, it is not any significant in commercial value…and may be essentially politically motivated just to cause damage to the entire country and to Nigerians,” the minister stated.
He said the total value of copper stolen by the vandals did not amount up to N10,000 but that the action knocked off about one million people from power supply and cost N27 million to repair.
Nebo also noted that water level in Kainji, Shiroro and Jebba hydro power plants “are quiet low right now”, which is partly responsible for the power drop.
He said the low water level of the dams was responsible for a loss of about 460 megawatts of electricity from the total 1,600 loss.
“We are hoping with the help of nature, it will come on board very shortly so that the 460 Mega Watts already lost because of water level will be recovered,” he said.
Speaking in same vein, Gabriel Suswam, governor of Benue State said the consistent vandalism of the gas pipelines was an act of sabotage and urged government to intensify efforts to ensuring that those responsible for the act are brought to book.
“The efforts and the huge amount of money being expended by government to ensure Nigerians enjoy constant supply of electricity is being sabotaged by some unknown individuals whose motivation is actually not known to anybody,” he said.
The meeting, presided over by Vice President Namadi Sambo and had in attendance governors Suswam, Emmanuel Uduaghan of Delta State, Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State and Theodore Orji of AbiaState.