The presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Mr. Peter Obi, yesterday told leaders of Nigeria’s organised private sector that his administration would totally liberalise the entire power sector value chain, including transmission, to ensure steady power supply if elected president next year.
Obi also vowed to encourage the setting up of more local refineries by private firms and to supply them crude oil in naira to refine for Nigeria’s domestic consumption.
He said this yesterday when he took his turn at the Private Sector Economic Forum for the 2023 Presidential Election that was organised in Lagos, by the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI).
The LCCI had played host to the presidential candidate of the Peoples’ Democratic Party, Alhaji Atiku Abubarka last Tuesday.
Obi said: “Power is something everybody is worried about. I know very well that the federal government as of today has removed power from exclusive list to concurrent list. But I will go further than that. Our power problem today is that we have privatised generation and distribution but left power transmission untouched.
“For me, the first thing I will do to ensure steady power supply is to liberalise transmission. This is critical if you are going to deal with our power sector. We will support the existing companies in the distribution and generation arms by ensuring that there is a dedicated gas supply which is one of their problems today.
“We will ensure that the generation, transmission and distribution are properly aligned. We will ensure clear certainty of policy and regulatory environment for them to operate. We will support them with access to funding that is attractive and deal with some of tax incentives. We have to ensure that renewable energy is embedded in our power process.’
He said his administration would limit government involvement in the power sector to providing sovereign guarantees and policy clarity and certainty that would attract private sector investment.
“The issue of power will have to be an emergency that we will have to deal with all means possible to ensure that we have power. To have the resources to do this, we will involve the private sector. Government does not need to be entirely involved. Government involvement will be to provide sovereign guarantees,” he said.