The Day 2 sitting of Senate Panel Probing the Power Sector suffered several paralysis on Wednesday as strange power outages within the venue prevented proceeding from progressing, leading to frustration of the Senate Ad hoc Committee anchoring the probe.In the previous day, officials of government took turn to reveal that the government of Nigeria had committed a whooping sum of N2.7 trillion to power sector between 1999 till date.Power went off more than eight times as the Public Hearing on Power Sector got midway, forcing the panelists and the invited government officials to depend on recharged lamps at the venue to hold their session.Wednesday sitting of the Probe Panel marked its last day of interactive session with stakeholders in the power sector.The sitting commenced at about 11:30am and ended abruptly at 4:00 pm due to power cut which lasted several minutes.There has been no official reaction from the National Assembly on the incident, which many described as strange, as such type had never been recorded in the National Assembly complex since its inauguration in 1999.The process began when the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Power, Godknows Igali was making a submission on behalf of the various electricity companies.Other critical stakeholders of the sector caught in the power outages when making presentations, were the Director- General of Bureau of Public Enterprises ( BPE), Benjamin Ezreal Dikki, the Chairman of National Electricity Regulatory Commission ( NERC), Sam Amadi and some of the Managing Directors of electricity Distribution Companies (DISCOs).Chairman of the Committee, Abubakar Kyari ( APC Borno North), was not spared, as his interjections were momentarily interrupted.Worried by the ugly development, Kyari after the session told journalists that the committee would investigate what led to the power outages during the session.“The power outages experienced here today further underscores the relevance of this committee at this critical time but we shall investigate whether they are deliberate or not”.He added that the public hearing proper on the sector, would hold in due course.Earlier, investors in the sector in their various submissions lamented that they are running it at great loses on monthly basis due myriad of factors.The Managing Director of Enugu Distribution Company , Mr Robert Dickerman who spoke on behalf of all the Distribution Companies ( DENKOs)   , said the entire industry is being run by them at a deficit of N20bn per month.This according to him, were due to over 50 % of electricity consumers not metered and about 30% , not even on the billing system of the service providers.He also alleged that even the N100billion subsidy injection into the sector , promised by the federal government was not fulfilled.A submission corroborated by the CEO Ibadan Electricity Generating Company, Adeoye Fagbembi on behalf of the  six GENCOs who said transmission losses between them and the electricity distributors , have been a big issue , even as the N100 bn subsidy earlier promised by government to bridge the loss gaps, is yet to be fulfilled.But the BPE Director- General, Benjamin Dikki, in his submission, said the Central Bank of Nigeria , has paid N5bn of the N100bn promised by the government.He however admitted that the sector is presently being run at a loss by the investors.He explained that the losses at initial stages, were envisaged as embedded in the performance agreement reached with the investors.In his own presentation, the Chairman of Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission ( NERC), Sam Amadi refuted allegations that the Transmission Company of Nigeria ( TCN),will soon be privatized by the federal government.According to him, government has no such plans because of the sensitivity of that particular component of the sector.

 

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