Tony Osauzo, Benin
The Benin Electricity Development Company (BEDC), on Wednesday, blamed its inability to provide services for 200,000 customers on the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN’s) failure to fix some of its faulty transformers.
Managing Director of BEDC, Mrs. Funke Osibodu, who disclosed this while interacting with newsmen in Benin-City, Edo State capital, listed the TCN transformers to include 60MVA at Effurun damaged as a result of bush fire since 2015, 40MVA at Okene since 2016, 150MVA, at Omotosho, 30MVA at Umuaran and 60MVA in Benin.
She said the failed transformers resulted to the company’s inability to supply about 100MW of power, adding that the failed transformers affected its 33kv feeders in areas like Effurun, Okada, Omotosho, Otun, Nekpennekpen, Koko and Ikpoba-Dam.
She said BEDC is following up with the TCN to resolve the issues in order to improve power availability to the affected areas.
She further said residence in some parts of Benin-City affected by the failed TCN 60MVA power transformer are now getting partial services and that the affected residences now get 6 hours of electricity daily until the issues are resolved.
This not however true, as many parts of Benin-City have not had electricity supply in the last three weeks.
The BEDC Managing Director while reacting to the directive by Governor Godwin Obaseki that some staff of the company be arrested for allegedly stealing transformer bought by Ihovbor.
Community, said the firm could not have stolen its property, explaining that the purported stolen transformer was part of assets it bought from the Federal Government.
She said the transformer in question was moved to Ubiaja in Esan South East local government area and that the claims by the community on the stolen transformer was incorrect and misleading.
On why Ihovbor community has no power supply, Osibodu said the actions of vandals on its 2.5MVA transformer caused serious mechanical and electrical damage resulting to inability to energise it.
“BEDC acquired all the assets of the defunct PHCN in November, 2013 and the 2.5MVA and 33/11kv transformers at Ihovbor were among them.
“The two transformers were procured and installed by the FG through the NIPP project and was handed over to BEDC as part of the sale transaction.
“We moved the idle transformer in December to Ubiaja. When the existing transformer at Ihovbor failed in October, we provided a replacement”, Mrs. Osibodu explained.