Epileptic power supply unacceptable to Nigerians, says Gbajabiamila

Epileptic power supply unacceptable to Nigerians, says Gbajabiamila

The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, says it is unacceptable to Nigerians that the country does not have regular power supply while several communities are disconnected from electricity.


Gbajabiamila made this known in Abuja on Tuesday at a public hearing on the Electric Power Sector Reform Act (Amendment) Bill organised by the House Committee on Power.


The Speaker noted that the Electric Power Sector Reform Act 2005 is a substantial piece of legislation, which remains the “most significant statutory reform of the power sector in Nigeria for a generation.”

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Epileptic power supply unacceptable to Nigerians, says Gbajabiamila
Epileptic power supply unacceptable to Nigerians, says Gbajabiamila

According to him, when the Act was written and passed into law, it was intended that the provisions would establish a new framework for optimal public-private sector collaboration to accelerate development in the power sector and promote efficiency across the power sector value chain.


He noted that the extent to which these expectations have been met is “one of the many issues in contention.” He said answering the question of what needs to be done to improve the Act, so that it serves the best purposes of our country, was the reason for the hearing.

He stressed that it was an opportunity for stakeholders in government, from industry and citizen groups, to participate in a structured conversation and contribute views that would help the House to undertake “a long-overdue reform of one of the critical legislation governing the operations of the power sector in Nigeria.”


Gbajabiamila said, “Every Nigerian understands that the electric power sector in Nigeria is not performing optimally. Most people recognise that a situation where we cannot expect 24-hour electricity in our cities and many rural areas remain wholly disconnected from the benefits of access to electricity is unacceptable. And we all, for the most part, agree that it is the responsibility of the government to do something about this situation.


“Unfortunately, that is usually the extent of agreement on the subject. Speak to ordinary citizens and industry operators, regulators and government officials, you will quickly find that there are many very different understandings of why the dysfunction in our power sector exists and persists. And there are just as many ideas and recommendations for how to fix it.”

The Speaker commended the Chairman, Aliyu Magaji, and members of the Committee on Power for their hard work on the bill, saying he looked forward to seeing the outcome of the efforts, hoping that “in the fullness of time, we can look back on the work that we have done on this bill and be proud that in the time we had, we did our best to fix this most critical area of our economy and national life.”

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