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‘Foreign investors’ on heavy machineries can’t survive on weekly power collapse’

Experts in development economics have given fresh reason why several roadshows and international campaigns by the Federal and State governments cannot convince deep pocket investors who rely on use of heavy machineries to do their business.

In an interview with Dr Kola Ilesanmi on the impacts of observed collapse of national grids especially within weekends, he said the scourge will continue to weaken the investment interests of blue chip firms that rely heavily on reliable power supplies.

Statistics show since this year, collapse of national grip which translates to sudden drop in power has occurred uncountable times suggesting serious challenge at the nation’s electricity transmission level.

Just last weekend, the total amount of power on Nigeria’s grid collapsed from a peak of 4,735.8 megawatts on Friday, November 8, 2019 to as low as 145MW on Saturday even though the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) said it had been restored.

Analysts say companies relying on the supplies will record serious production challenges over the weekend and may spent a set of fortunes to return back to normalcy without any form of compensation from the relevant government agencies.

Additional industry data obtained in Abuja on Sunday showed that the grid actually collapsed twice on November 8 and November 9, but this was refuted by the TCN as it argued that the second incident occurred during the process of restoring the grid.

The Executive Summary of grid performance showed that on November 8, the country’s electricity grid recorded a partial collapse as it dropped from 4,735.8MW to 429.5MW.

It, however, picked up and recorded a high of 4,407.1MW on November 9, 2019. But this was not sustained as the grid collapsed again to 145MW.

Reacting to the cause of the collapse, TCN’s General Manager, Public Affairs, Ndidi Mbah, said the incident was caused by the tripping of the Lokoja-Gwagwalada transmission lines 1 and 2 on power swing, claiming that “The causes of the power swing were yet to be determined.”

She added that part two of the weekend collapse is linked to the tripping of the Onitsha-Alaoji transmission line on overcurrent on the grid collapse.

Observers say investors’ confidence on power will begin to be strong when the government invests on the needed infrastructure that will assure steady supplies that discourages alternative power sources which drain corporate earnings.