The recent announcement of plan to give Nigerians two months of free electricity as part of palliatives for COVID-19 is nothing more than propaganda that cannot work, the Transmission Company of Nigeria has said.
The TCN faulted the announcement by power distribution companies that the Federal Government and the National Assembly would pay for the proposed two-month free electricity for customers.
Discos made the announcement through their umbrella body, the Association of Nigerian Electricity Distributors.
Reacting to the development in Abuja on Thursday, the Managing Director of the TCN, Usman Mohammed, said, “There is this information that went round that power is going to be free.
“I don’t know where that information came from.
“But I can tell you that there is nothing like power is going to be free because the Federal Government cannot make power free. The Federal Government does not own the power.”
Mohammed explained that the Federal Government only owns the TCN while the generation and distribution companies were largely owned by private investors.
He said, “In the electricity industry, apart from transmission, which is just the transporter, all the other chains do not belong to the Federal Government. So I cannot understand how somebody will concoct that information.”
Mohammed argued that those peddling the information were merely sharing propaganda that would not work.
He said, “But these are some of the people involved in propaganda who brand information that is very unnecessary, to be honest.
“I think at this stage what we need to do is to sustainably supply electricity and that is what we are doing.”
The TCN boss further stated that in the last two weeks that most parts of Nigeria had been on lockdown, operators in the power sector had worked and performed well.
However, the House of Representatives and electricity distribution companies raised a joint committee on the proposed two-month free power supply on Thursday.
Speaker of the House, Femi Gbajabiamila, who presided over a meeting in Abuja with the companies and other officials, said the joint panel would work out modalities for the proposed two-month bill waiver for the most vulnerable people in the country.