Ekiti seeks suspension of TCN, BEDC plan to disrupt power supply

By John Odunayo

Ekiti State Government has called for the suspension of the proposed plan of the Transmission Company of Nigeria and the Benin Electricity Distribution Company to put the state in blackout for nine hours daily for two months effective from July 1.

The state Commissioner for Infrastructures and Public Utilities, Prof. Mobolaji Aluko, said, “The planned disruption of electricity for three-eighths of each day for 62 days, amounting to 558 hours total and 23 days of outage in these two months amounts to an unacceptable economic, financial and social price to be paid by the citizens of Ekiti State, and we totally reject such a plan”.

The commissioner spoke in a letter dated June 30 addressed to the MD/CEO, TCN, Abuja; MD/CEO, BEDC, Benin-City; And the Chairman, Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Company, Abuja.

Recall that TCN and BEDC had in notices, announced that TCN’s schedule to carry out critical maintenance work on the 132kV Akure Osogbo transmission line which would involve the installation of Optical Ground Wire and other activities requiring outage on the affected network for safe working space.

TCN and BEDC had stated that the maintenance would be between July 1 and August 31 and that there would be power outage in Ondo and Ekiti states for nine hours from 8am daily throughout the two-month period.

But Aluko said that his ministry was not informed nor was approval sought and obtained from the Ekiti State Electricity Regulatory Bureau, saddled by law with the full authority to regulate the electricity industry in Ekiti State.

The commissioner consequently called for the immediate suspension of the plan and called for an emergency meeting with the regional heads of TCN, BEDC and National Electricity Regulatory Commission on Tuesday, July 2, 2024, in his office in Ado Ekiti “to devise an alternative and far less adverse plan to achieve the same stated aims”.

He stated, “Our attention has been called to public notifications, both in print and in jingles in English and in Yoruba, of the intention of BEDC under advice by TCN to disrupt power supply to the transmission stations in Akure and Ado-Ekiti – and in effect to adversely affect the Ekiti State and Ondo State areas – for nine hours each day (8.00am to 5.00pm) from July 1, 2024 to August 31, 2024.

Aluko stated, “We request prompt attention to this matter while we are eager to work collaboratively toward a sustainable solution that will benefit both citizens of the state and the Ekiti State Electricity Supply Industry”.

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