The Minster of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, has revealed that the Federal Government was not against state governments developing their own power projects to support development and improvement in power supply.
Fashola made tis known on Thursday at a meeting of the National Council on Power (NACOP) in Jos with the theme: “Completing Power Sector Reforms”, saying that the forum provided an opportunity to share with representatives of state governments, other participants what the Power Sector Recovery Programme (PSRC) was about.
“I heard statements to the effect that Federal Government should allow the states to develop their own power projects,” he said.
“The truth is that Federal government is not standing on the way of any state; the laws do not stand in the way of any state to develop power projects.
“Because as governor, we built seven power plants, government did not stop us; what we could not do is to do commercial distribution which the law actually allows under license through Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC).”
The minister said some of the reform actions contained in the PSRC were already being undertaken at the Federal Government’s level adding that there were other areas of the reform where progress in the sector would be defined by what happened at the state and local government.
He called on the state governments to champion advocacy in some areas of the reforms process in their states to further realise incremental power programme of the Federal Government.
“State authorities should ensure that their residents comply with safety standard on building by not building on the right of way of 332/ 133, 33 and 11KVA lines.
“States can also help by leading the advocacy for the residents to pay for the energy they fairly believe that they have consumed, while we continue to work to resolve the metering issues and estimated billing.
“States should lead the advocacy for people to stop bypassing meters and stealing energy; energy theft happens in the municipal levels, not in the senate, not in the villa or the house of reps,” he stated.