THE Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) has appealed to host communities to take ownership control of power facilities in their communities and desist from vandalising them.
The TCN managing director and chief executive officer, Sule Ahmed Abdulaziz, made the appeal when he visited the site of a vandalized tower, No. 104, along the Odukpani/Ikot Ekpene 330kV transmission line in the Oku Iboku community, Itu local government area of Akwa Ibom State.
In a statement issued on Monday, April 11, 2022 in Abuja, the company said the vandalised tower caused a sudden loss of 400 megawatts from the grid, causing its collapse on Friday, April 8, 2022.
The grid has since been restored.
“TCN is appealing to host communities to assist it in the fight against vandalism of our collective assets by reporting suspicious activities around its operations to TCN offices or to security operatives,” the statement read.
The Minister of Power, Abubakar Aliyu, had confirmed that the national power outage that was experienced across Nigeria on Friday was caused by an act of vandalism to a transmission tower on the Odukpani- Ikot Ekpene 330kV double circuit transmission line, thus resulting in a sudden loss of about 400mw.
“This consequently led to a cascade of plant shut-down across the country,” Aliyu had explained in a statement.
The ICIR reports that electricity distribution companies across the country also announced the blackout, the fifth of such incident this year, following many hours of no electricity.
Aliyu assured the public that efforts were being undertaken to restore power “sequentially”, but did not give any details on when the exercise would be completed.
The minister had also said that the government was working on improving the capacity and reliability of the national grid.
Power outages are not uncommon in Nigeria, causing many businesses to be reliant on generators.
Nigeria has an installed capacity of 12,500 megawatts, but on a good day produces only a fraction of that output. This situation, findings revealed, is as a result of moribund power infrastructure across the various power sector value chains.
Harrison Edeh is a journalist with the International Centre for Investigative Reporting, always determined to drive advocacy for good governance through holding public officials and businesses accountable.