Isaac Anumihe, Abuja
The Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) has said that Boko Haram insurgents have attacked its 330/132kv transmission substation at Molai in Maiduguri, Borno State, throwing residents into darkness.
A statement by the General Manager (Public Affairs), TCN, Ndidi Mbah, said that during the attack, two post isolators porcelain units were affected. Two Hilux vans and one vehicle belonging to a staff of TCN were destroyed while insurgents made away with the third Hilux Van.
Other items destroyed include Hiab truck, computer, monitor and printer in the control room. The windows of the control room and staff house were also shattered by gun shots.
According to the statement, the operator on duty did exceptionally well by opening the transmission lines from the substation and shutting down the station before leaving the substation moments before the insurgents reached the substation. She said, however, that after the incident, TCN engineers did a thorough check of the substation equipment before power supply was restored.
The company commended efforts of security operatives who have continued to make it possible for its operators to run the substation and appealed that more of them should be deployed to the area, to further boost the morale of workers who have been unrelenting in ensuring that electricity supply is sustained in Maiduguri and environs despite the risks.
According to Mbah, the 330/132/33kv Molai transmission substation was completed and energised on October 25, 2018 and was also formally commissioned on Wednesday, February 13, 2019. The substation comprises 150MVA and 60MVA power transformers which feed Yola Disco customers in Maiduguri and environs.
The company reiterated its commitment to implementing the transmission rehabilitation and expansion programme under which some level of investment and stability has been achieved.
To completely stabilise and modernise the grid, the Federal Government, she said, must complete the on-going investment in grid expansion and rehabilitation; establish adequate spinning reserve and install well-functioning SCADA. The Molai substation had experienced attacks by insurgents in the past but this has not deterred TCN from ensuring that power is supplied to Maiduguri.