Nigeria: Borno to Get Electricity From Niger Republic

By Hamza Idris

 Maiduguri — Some communities in northern part of Borno State that have never enjoyed electricity from the Nigerian National Grid will soon get light from the neighboring Niger Republic.Commissioner for housing and rural electrification, Alhaji Sugun Mai Mele, who stated this in Maiduguri yesterday while briefing journalists on the activities of his ministry, said the decision was taken because it is easier to tap light from Niger for the Borno communities that are closer to the francophone country in the northern fringes.

The commissioner said after negotiating with authorities in Niger Republic, the state government had completed the "33KVA line electrification network to Mallamfatori (in Nigeria) and the installation of substation and breaker in Bosso town of Niger Republic."

He said the project will open door for some communities in northern parts of Borno State to enjoy uninterrupted power supply from what Niger got from its dedicated line in Nigeria.He said the state government had installed dozens of electricity transformers in order to resuscitate small and medium scale businesses but lamented the delay in the completion of the multi billion naira 330KVA power project which will improve supply to Yobe and Borno States from Gombe. "The state government had provided a 33KV to Damboa Road; we have also done the electrification of Shuwari 11and rehabilitated the 33 KVA line at Manda Girau in Biu as well as Biu-Marama-Pete-Hema-Shani electrification network," he said.

He added that transformers have been installed at the Maiduguri Maximum Prison, JTF headquarters, Miringa town in Biu, Neitel Shoe Factory and Trailer Park but frowned that the impacts of the projects are rarely felt because of poor supply from the national grid.

Mele described Borno as the worse hit by epileptic power supply in the country. "The highest we get is less than 7 megawatts and this include what we consume here as well as the dedicated line that takes light to Damasak (in Borno State) and part of Niger Republic," he said.


Mele said Governor Kashim Shettima had met with officials of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) and Energy Commission of Nigeria (ECN) and deliberated on how to address the problem, adding that the state is also discussing with a German company on a 20KVA Independent Power Project

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