MINISTER of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, on Thursday, said the recent attacks on gas pipelines in the Niger Delta region by militants had made the nation’s power sector vulnerable.
The minister made this known while speaking on issues affecting the sector at the inaugural town hall forum called “The Podium,” with the theme: “Fixing Nigeria,” organised by the Kukah Centre.
He pointed out that the government of President Muhammadu Buhari could not continue to depend only on gas to provide power to Nigerians.
Fashola explained that the government had concluded plans on sustainable power development and supply strategy to tackle the power crisis.
According to him, the plan had been included in the roadmap for the sector, which are in three phases, the first phase incremental, second steady power and third, uninterrupted power supply.
“Thinking is what the Kukah Centre brings, and thinking through about the apparent solution brings out a better solution.
“The optimum power we have produced in 66 years is 5,074 megawatts and that happened on February 2, 2016. It is clear that 5,000 megawatts of power is not enough for the country and that is why our first step is getting more power and that is the method of incremental power as the first phase.
“Second phase is steady power and it means everybody gets enough power, and whether we get enough power or not, we need data and census, which is necessary in order to know what power each household needs.
“The third phase, uninterrupted power, is how we can use energy, being energy conscious we are, energy conserving we are and our lifestyle towards energy matters.
Earlier in his address, the Director of the Kukah Centre, Dr Arthur-Martins Aginam, had said the centre, founded by Bishop Mathew Kukah, was established to assess policies of government and get a broader view of Nigerians on best solutions to address fundamental issues that could impact the living condition of Nigerians and give a sense of belonging to every citizen in the country.
“It is in part address this problem that the Kukah Centre was established to serve as a platform for mediation between the government and the people. On the theme we chose ‘Fixing Nigeria,’ we are very confident that Nigeria can be fixed and must be fixed,” he said.