Contrary to claims that new investors refused to invest in the privatised power sector, the management of Eko Electricity Distribution Company (EKEDC) has explained how it invested N6.5 billion on project expansion, staff training and metering of customers.
Addressing journalists on Wednesday, in Lagos, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO)/Managing Director, EKEDC, Engr. Oladele Amoda, stated that the company had invested N1.44billion on project expansion, N5billion on metering of maximum demand and non-maximum demand customers and N55.2million on staff training and capacity building.
Amoda argued his company had embarked on massive rehabilitation and reinforcement of dilapidated equipment.
He stated further that over 400 transformers have been installed in various locations to reduce low shedding of supply.
Other projects concluded by the company in last three years include: construction of five injector substations to be completed in the third quarter of 2017; and construction of five 33/11KVA injection substations in Surulere, Ikoyi and Ajah axis with a cost of N1billion.
According to him, “EKEDC has made modest improvement in electricity supply in the last three years of post-privatisation but still confronted with little challenges.
“Over N1.44billion spent on various projects expansion within the company to boost electricity supply to customers in the last three years,” he said.
He argued further that about 6,000 meters would be rolled out very soon to customers, while over 67,000 meters have been installed so far including 187 maximum demand meters.
Amoda however complained about energy theft and vandalisation of equipment adding that billions of naira have been spent on replaced vandalised equipment.
“Money meant for expansion and development of the network was being used to replace vandalised equipments and this poses serious concern to the company.
“Despites all success recorded, the company is still faced with liquidity challenges which stood but N900billion gap due to high rate of foreign exchange,” he said.
He posited that government policy on foreign exchange have made international lenders to become sceptical of giving loans to power industry in the country which also posed serious challenge to power investors.
“Moreso, inability of Federal Government Ministries, Department and Agencies (MDAs) to pay their outstanding debts of over N11billion owing EKEDC as at July 2016 affected the company greatly.
“To enhance productivity of the workforce, staff members have undergone training and are still going through training in different areas in business process development, strategic customer relationship, safety, technical efficiency and revenue cycle management,” he said.