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Reps move to halt award of power contracts to foreigners

To retaliate maltreatment of citizens, Nigerian Reps begin probe of legality of Chinese, their business

Members of the House of Representatives Friday affirmed they would prevent the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) from offering expatriates power contracts while ignoring eligible Nigerians with requisite skills for undertaking such projects.

Magaji Aliyu, who chairs the House Committee on Power, made the disclosure during his visit to the TCN headquarters in Abuja alongside other committee members.

“We are not going to allow you to be giving contracts to foreign nationals while we have Nigerian engineers. Nobody will give us loan and dictate whom to give the contract. The President wants to bring down the rate of unemployment.”

Aliyu informed the new TCN management that the committee’s oversight function fell within the routine of the parliament as outlined by Nigeria’s constitution.

“We are not here to intimidate; we are only here to ensure things are done properly. We have to commend TCN. So far you have done relatively well but there is room for improvement,” he said.

Ahmed Abdulaziz, acting Managing Director of the TCN, told the lawmakers it is imperative to effect some turnaround in the system before the country’s transmission segment of the electricity value chain could be strengthened.

Read also: Nigeria enters deal with Siemens to revamp power sector

“I want to begin by stressing that the journey to strengthening of the transmission sector must start with a critical transformation of the existing system, where the government, regulator and TCN management will all play core roles.

“The government and the regulator would take the lead to create the right investment, while TCN focuses on implementing new technology, faster project execution and improving operational efficiencies.

“In order to drive growth in capacity utilisation, the immediate focus of the new TCN management would be on replacing or repairing existing equipment, which are failing and prone to breakdown,” he said.

Abdulaziz assured that consistent and proactive maintenance practices would be institutionalised to curtail the incidence and effects of breakdowns.

Similarly, he disclosed that the TCN would focus on capacity expansion via new projects that would cover the entire country.

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