Bayelsa govt commends FG for upgrading Gbarantoru transmission substation

BAYELSA government has commended the Federal Government for upgrading the 2x40MVA power transformer to 1x90MV at the Gbarantoru 132/33KV transmission substation in Bayelsa.

Mr Peter Afagha, Commissioner for Power in Bayelsa, gave the commendation on Thursday in Yenogo during an inspection of the substation by officials of Ministry of Power, Works and Housing.

According to Afagha, the upgrade has improved power supply in the state.

Afagha said Bayelsa government and citizens were very happy with the new innovation in the substation.

The commissioner said that the upgrade of the substation had resulted in improved power supply in Yenagoa and many other communities in the state.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that contract for installation and commissioning of the 1×90,132/33KV substation was awarded to Messers Income Electric Ltd. in 2013 at the cost of N801 million.

However, the ministerial tender board in its meeting on June 18, 2014, modified the contract to 3.6 million dollars to ensure early delivery of the offshore component of the project.

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The completion status of the project as measured at the end of November 2018, indicated that engineering work had been completed at 100 per cent.

Procurement recorded 95 per cent, construction recorded 100 per cent, while the overall completion stood at 98.33 per cent.

The 1×90 MVA 132/33KV having been handed over to the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) by the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing had also been energised since July 2018.

“I want to on behalf of Bayelsa State Government thank the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing for the significant milestone that has been recorded in this project.

“The Bayelsa state government is very happy with this innovation, the entire Bayelsa is very happy for the reinforcement of this power transformer.

“The state government before now had the Kolokri creek turbine which was functional for some time, but we had a little hitch.

“But this project will complement the electricity we are receiving.’’

Afagha, however, appealed to the Federal Government to construct other transmission substations in Ogbia Nembe and Ekeremor axis of the state.

“Based on the foregoing, I am still pleading on behalf of the state that the Federal Government should take into consideration the installation of Ogbe Nembe-Sabama Ekeremor 132/33kv transmission substations.’’

The Managing Director, Bayelsa State Electricity Company Ltd, Mr Olice Kemenanbo said the state government was happy about the incremental power programme of the Federal Government.

“I want to give kudos to the present administration at the federal level because this project was not abandoned.

“The current administration showed a real sense of patriotism by placing this project on the front burner.

“Today we are here to say that this project is ready to evacuate power to the Bayelsa electricity distribution network.”

He said Bayelsa government on its part had shown commitment to the power supply by becoming the first state to have developed an independent power plant in the country.

“Up till 2006, we were depending on our independent power supply at Kolokri creek, it was a 2×40 power station with 400 kilometres of the distribution network.

“But, we could not sustain it because we had an issue with the suppliers of gas, who insisted that we must pay for all the gas bills that have accrued over a period.

“Government paid about 35 per cent and we agreed that we would get the balance and pay over time on instalment.

“There is nothing wrong with the plant, the only problem we have is that we have not been able to conclude with Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) that decided to lock their gas vibes.

“Once we conclude with them and they open their gas vibes in less than 10 days, we should be operating the Bayelsa independent power plant again.”

Kemenanbo said, while efforts were being made to revamp Kolokri power station, other private initiatives were being taken by the state government and multinational oil companies to provide power.

He said the initiative was designed to generate additional captive and off-grid electricity in the state.

Mrs Emontonghan Osaisai, the Director, Investment and Sector Development in the ministry said the ministry was working assiduously to ensure incremental, steady and uninterrupted power in the country.

She said the Federal Government had initiated a distribution expansion programme designed to strengthen distribution networks in the country.

“ Government was making effort to ensure that there is power and as far as we are working with the private sectors because the sector has been privatised.

“It also behoves on citizens to know that the power sector has been privatised and that they have to pay for this power.

“If they don’t pay, we won’t be able to provide for the facilities that will ensure that power is made available for everybody to use.

“The citizens need to be educated that money realised from the payment of electricity will not be used by any individual.

“It is money that will be ploughed back into the sector for it to keep working and we have come and seen that this substation is working.‘’

The General Manager of TCN, Port Harcourt region, Mr Solomon Uyouko said the newly installed 90MVA transformer in the substation had been supplying power to Bayelsa since July 2018.

He said the substation was capable of providing a 20 hours electricity to consumers in the state if the DisCo covering the state would be willing to take all the power in the substation.

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