The Nigerian federal government has directed contractors engaged with projects in the country’s power sector across the country to return back to site. Most of the said contractors reportedly abandoned their sites due the Corona virus.
The Minister of Power, Sale Mamman, who made the directive, said there had been gradual relaxation of the COVID-19 lockdown. The minister spoke while inspecting the newly completed 2X60MVA 132/33KV substation in Gagarawa, Jigawa State, constructed by the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN).
“I can tell you that the impact of the pandemic is huge in the power sector as a real service provider. However, we have joined the government’s effort to restart the economy with the easing of the lockdown.
“This includes the reopening of our interstate roads and as such, I direct all contractors handling power projects to return to sites and work assiduously to recover from the losses recorded during the lockdown,” Mamman stated.
On the 2X60MVA 132/33KV substation in Gagarawa, the minister said the facility would boost power supply in over seven Local government areas, including an industrial area. The Governor of Jigawa State, Abubakar Badaru, who joined the minister on the inspection, said the substation would increase the state’s revenue generation through the industrialisation of several communities.
The communities include Gagarawa, Ringim, Gumel, Taura and Mira. The governor hinted that the substation would trigger the establishment of over 50 industries in the areas.
The minister explained that contract for the substation was designed with two 60MVA, 132/33kV transformers of about 96 megawatts capacity and six outgoing 33kV feeders. It was awarded in 2012 with an initial completion period of 24 months.
I was gathered that work on the substation was put on hold by the contractors for a long time until the management of the TCN recently reviewed the contract in order to ensure its delivery.
Chibisi Ohakah, Abuja