The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Transcorp Power Limited, Christopher Ezeafulukwe, has decried the financial costs associated with servicing equipment such as turbines outside the country.
Ezeafulukwe said this following a tour of its facilities at Transcorp’s plant in Ughelli, Delta State, by a delegation from the Army War College of Nigeria as part of their environmental study tour.
According to him, the fact that companies in Nigeria have to resort to incurring additional costs while servicing their turbines abroad remains a downside to the business.
He said this was amounting to millions lost in foreign currencies, which the country could have saved if these services could be sourced locally.
He pointed out that Nigeria’s overdependence on technical services from overseas was also bound to increasingly expose gas plants in the country to huge logistics challenges.
“For instance, to carry out routine inspection of the turbines, you need to fly them out which is a huge foreign expenditure which exposes us to logistic challenges. The fact is that we queue to wait for some clearance before being allowed to do our jobs, which to a large extent affects our turnaround, because, if you have a turbine that should have come back in six months, it ends up taking about eight to 10 months. This in turn will deny us the ability to generate power that could have been added to the National Grid to support the nation’s economy,” Ezeafulukwe explained.
He advocated the need for deliberate and significant improvement in the generation, transmission and distribution of electricity, saying, “There is the urgent need for everyone involved to decisively tackle the current epileptic power supply in the country because it is rather distressing for a country of over 200 million people to still be grappling with driving its economic and social activities with a meagre 5,000MW of electricity.”
In his remarks, the Deputy Commandant/Director of Studies at the War College, Brigadier-General U.M. Alkali, who led the delegation from the Army War College, revealed that the theme of the tour of the facility was ‘Protection of Critical National Assets and Infrastructure for National Defence.’