Senate Tasks Federal Gov’t On Restoring Electricity To North-East

Senate Tasks Federal Gov't On Restoring Electricity To North-East

The Nigerian Senate has called on the Federal Government to restore electricity in the entire North East region of the country.

The Northeastern region where the Vice President, Senator Kashim Shettima hailed from has been in darkness for weeks as a result of the damage on the transmission line.

Speaking on the development, the Senate on Wednesday bemoaned the lack of electricity in most parts of the North East and urged the Federal Government through the Federal Ministry of Power to urgently restore power to the region.

Debating a motion on “Urgent need to address the vandalisation of TCN transmission lines in the North-East region of Nigeria” sponsored by Senator Manu Haruna (Taraba Central), the Senate said the Federal Government should allocate funds to the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) to address the faults on the 330KV transmission line along Jos-Gombe and restore power supply to affected areas, especially on all affected towers.

The Senate noted that the vandalisation of critical electricity transmission infrastructure posed significant threat to the economic prosperity, public health, safety, and security of the North-East region of Nigeria.

While moving the motion, Senator Haruna said recent incidents of vandalisation of the transmission line has resulted in severe disruptions to power supply, affecting millions of residents, hospitals, commercial activities communication networks, public safety, and the overall well-being of the people in Plateau, Gombe, Adamawa, Taraba, Bauchi, Yobe and Borno states.

In his contribution, Senator Kaka Lawan (Borno Central), lamented that the region has been neglected for too long, adding that “some parts of the North East had no light in the last two years.”

Senator Shaibu Lau (Taraba North), still talking about the “neglect of the region for too long” said although the region has the Mambila Power project, there is nothing like the project in reality.

Senator Lau also stressed that with lack of power in the region “poverty is endemic as insurgency has disrupted our lives”.

In his contribution to the motion, former Senate President, Ahmad Lawan (Yobe North), lamented the underdevelopment of the North East zone.

According to him, the underdevelopment of the zone was reported in the United Nations Report in the 90s, classifying it as the poorest out of the 6 zones in terms of economic and infrastructural development.

He added that asking for revival of electricity infrastructure was the smallest compared to what other zones are enjoying.

Senator Ahmed Wadada representing Nasarawa West Senatorial District in his part, sympathised with the Senators and constituents that make up the entire North East over electricity blackout, insisting that economic activities have moved from the analog to digital era, such that without electricity, no one can virtually do anything to eke out a living.

He said, “I sympathise with the people of North-East who have been without light for over a month due to total blackout. Without electricity you can’t achieve virtually anything.

“Without natives charging their phones, how do you communicate, do digital banking?”

Wadada urged Senator Godswill Akpabio to change the narrative, given that the present administration has the political wherewithal to ensure the workability of the power sector.

After contributions by other lawmakers, prayers “urging the FG to expedite the construction of the Makurdi-Jalingo 330KVA transmission line,” and “that the FG should implement the recommendations in Sections 209, 210, 211, 212, and 213 of the Electricity Act, 2023 was sustained after the question was put to vote by the Senate President, Godswill Akpabio.

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