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Governors reject plan to privatise power plants




THE Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), consisting of all the 36 state governors, has rejected plans by the Federal Government to privatise power plants.

The NGF said its lawyers have taken steps to prevent the Federal Government from selling the plants, which are under the National Integrated Power Projects (NIPPs).

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The Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC), which is owned by the federal, state, and local government councils, is a power generation and distribution company that oversees the implementation of the NIPPs.

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The chairman of the NGF, Sokoto State governor Aminu Tambuwal, restated the position of the governors in a communique released after a teleconference on Wednesday, November 23.

“The Forum, following its advocacy that the proposed privatisation of 10 National Integrated Power Projects (NIPPs) by the Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) should be stopped, instructed its lawyers to approach the Federal High Court which, at present has issued a court order restraining all the parties in the suit from taking any step or action that will make or render the outcome of the motion on notice seeking for interlocutory injunction nugatory.

“The effect of the order of the court is that respondents cannot proceed with the proposed sale of the power plants belonging to the Niger Delta Power Holding Company Limited (NDPHCL) until the hearing and determination of the motion on notice for interlocutory injunction,” the communique said.

The NIPPs in contention were not listed in the communique.

However, the National Council on Privatisation (NPC) had in April 2021, approved the privatization of five power plants.

The five power plants are Geregu, Omotosho, Olorunsogo, Calabar and Benin-Ihovbor.

The governors, in the communique, also insisted that the dispute over the planned payment of $418 million Paris Club refund fee to some consultants by the Federal Government should be left for the court to decide.

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Usman Mustapha is a solution journalist with International Centre for Investigative Reporting. You can easily reach him via: umustapha@icirnigeria.com. He tweets @UsmanMustapha_M

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