FEDERAL MINISTRY OF POWER, WORKS & HOUSING

FMPWH

Font Size
Welcome To Federal Ministry Of Power Works And Housing
The Power Sector
The Works Sector
The Housing Sector
Power Works And Housing

LATEST PRESS
20 February, 2019

FG Denies Plans To Stop Payment Of Shortfalls To GENCOS

Following a report in a national daily newspaper, the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing Wednesday denied that the Federal Government has stopped the payment of shortfalls to Electricity Generation Companies (GenCos), describing the report as both false and unfounded.

The report, contained in the Wednesday edition of Punch Online media, held that the Federal Government on Tuesday ordered power generation companies to find customers and sell their power directly to the identified customers as, according to the report, “plans are on the way for it to ultimately exit the monthly payments to Gencos to help cushion the revenue shortfalls on the books of the power generators as a result of the poor remittances from the power distributors”.

The report titled, “FG to stop payment of shortfalls to Gencos” and attributed to the Permanent Secretary (Power) in the Ministry, Engr. Louis Edozien, emanated from the remarks of the Permanent Secretary at a Workshop organized by the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) on Tuesday, 12th February, 2019 on the Eligible Customer Regulation.

But in a Statement signed by the Permanent Secretary in person, the Ministry asserted that at no point in his remarks did the Permanent Secretary state that "FGN is to stop payment of shortfalls to Gencos", pointing out that the Payment Assurance Programme of the Federal Government that authorized the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trader (NBET) to guarantee payment for any power it has contracted from generation companies on the national grid had not been reversed.

The Statement read in part, “The Payment Assurance Programme of the Federal Government of Nigeria that authorized NBET to borrow N701.9 billion to guarantee payment for any power it has contracted from generation companies on the national grid and their gas and other suppliers has been in operation since January 2017. The amount NBET is authorized to borrow is not yet fully drawn. The Federal Executive Council (FEC) approved the programme. FEC has not taken any decision to stop it. FEC is the appropriate authority to comment on the Programme’s tenure and borrowing ceiling”.

In order to set the records straight, the Statement clarified that at the workshop organized by NERC on the Eligible Customer Regulation, the Permanent Secretary urged generation companies to more aggressively take advantage of the regulation to sell the power they can generate, of which 2,000MW is now stranded, to Eligible Customers who need it and are willing and able to pay for it.

Insisting that it would be better than waiting for NBET to pay for it or to guarantee it, for which NBET needs support from the Federal Government due to shortfalls in payment by distribution companies, the Permanent Secretary decried that though the Minister issued the policy direction to NERC that gave rise to the regulation in May 2017, and NERC has issued the regulation, none of the interested consumers and their generation company suppliers have been given licenses to buy and sell power as Eligible Customers. He encouraged NERC to accelerate and simplify the licensing process.

He further stated that the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) should continue to support the regulation by making targeted investments in the national grid, as needed to service specific contracts with generation companies and Eligible Customers to transmit the power, with penalties for failure to transmit, adding that TCN could finance such targeted investments with the expected revenue from such bilateral transmission contracts.

Encouraging electricity distribution companies (DisCos) to embrace the policy, the Permanent Secretary argued that if the DisCos were satisfying the power supply needs of their consumers of bulk power adequately such consumers would have no reason to generate the power by themselves or to want to become Eligible Customers adding that by embracing the regulation, the DisCos could partner with investors and generation companies to build new distribution infrastructure to better serve specific paying customers.

“They can buy power directly from generation companies and contract with TCN to deliver it, and give premium service to selected customers or customer groups”, the Permanent Secretary said adding that in such cases the distribution company must be willing and able to guarantee the payment for the power they buy, “because the shortfalls in payment which characterizes their power purchases from NBET, would not be possible in such bilateral contracts”.

The Permanent Secretary then enjoined dissatisfied consumers to take advantage of the Customer Care platforms set up by all the distribution companies in compliance with the provisions of their license, and escalate unresolved complaints to the NERC Consumer f Forum offices, as provided for in regulations, emphasizing that dissatisfied consumers could take advantage of the Mini-Grid Regulation, NERC's up-coming Franchising Regulation and the Eligible Customer Regulation to get premium power that meets their needs.

The Workshop revealed that the Ministry has received forty four (44) expressions of interest with a total demand for 600MW from underserved and unserved consumers desirous of becoming Eligible Customers. Of these, 14 have submitted license applications to NERC, two have fulfilled all NERC's conditions and expect to be licensed imminently.

The Ministry enjoins the public to discountenance the false report, and requests that the news outlets purveying such fake news cease and desist.

Fashola To Goje : Don’t Trivialize The Issues Raised On Budget 2017 *  Says Senator’s language is unparliamentary, therefore  not deserving of a reply *  I need a better budget as a tool to do my work and that is why l am speaking out  Minister The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola SAN on Thursday said it was regrettable that the Senate Committee Chairman on Appropriation, Senator Danjuma Goje would seek to trivialize the issues he raised about the unilateral slashing of the budgetary allocation to key national infrastructure by the National Assembly. In a Statement personally signed by the Minister and sent in from Zimbabwe where he is currently attending the 35th Annual General Meeting of the Shelter Afrique, Fashola said he was responding only for the purpose of refocusing attention to the issues at stake. According to the Minister, the Senator’s reference to the patriotism of legislators should not be spoken but demonstrated as regards his calls for a more developmental budgeting approach. Explaining this further, the Minister declared: “In this context, it is left for Nigerians to then decide whether budgeting for constituency roads is more patriotic than budgeting to complete the Kano-Maiduguri Road that connects 5 states, the Lagos-Ibadan road that connects 3 states and helps to move food, imported goods and fuel across the country; or the 2nd Niger Bridge that connects the East and West geopolitical zones of at least 11 states together. “I will also leave Nigerians to judge whether it is more patriotic to budget for the Mambilla Power Project that will contribute to more power across Nigeria or reduce the budget to build street lights in legislative constituencies.” The Minister noted that the response to the issues he raised certainly should not have been accusations of his blackmailing the Legislature or referring to  those who shared his views as his “surrogates”. Reiterating his respect for the Parliament as a house where very vigorous debates about development should take place, Fashola advised Senator Goje to acquire the temperament for such debate and disagreement. “Let me Let me reiterate that I see Parliament as a house where very vigorous debates about development should take place and it is important for Goje to acquire the temperament of debate and disagreement”. Decrying the Senator’s admonition that he should learn how to “behave” like a “Minister” and the reference to the Senate awaiting how he would be “handled” by the House of Representatives, the Minister declared, “ I think first that the language  is unparliamentary and therefore not deserving of a reply”. Noting that Goje’s faux  pas gave a clearer insight into how the Senator and those who may be minded like him may be thinking having transited from the Executive arm to the Legislative arm , the Minister called for caution. ” It seems that it is such people who need a behavioural prescription about legislative function,” Fashola said. According to the Minister, a good budget remains a necessary tool for the Executive to do its work because when services are inadequate, the members of the public often  look to the Executive arm for answers. “ I need a better budget as a tool to do my work and that is why l am speaking out”, he said.
7 July, 2017
BRF: RESOLUTELY FOCUSSED AT 54 BY HAKEEM BELLO May 2017 was appraisal time of the mid term of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari in office. Expectedly, much attention was on the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing, as it controls the fulcrum, which the country’s development revolves around. While Power plays a vital role in its industrial development, Works (roads, bridges) facilitates the transaction of business and social activities across its boundaries and cultures while Housing gives both stability and security to its human resource. There were, and there will still continue to be truths, half-truths, and outright falsehoods. Indeed, in a clime where some people earn political patronage or keep their positions by how savagely they can disparage the subject of this discourse, certain outlets and their tendencies have simply become predictable.  However, as C.P Scott wrote in 1921, “comments are free, but facts are sacred.” The fact is that with a reputation built not on quick fixes but enduring solutions and far sightedness, Mr Babatunde Raji Fashola SAN remains resolutely focused. As he turns 54 today, it would still be in tune with the spirit of mid term assessment to look at what BRF has been doing with the tax payers time as a public officer.  Flag-off The stewardship of Mr Fashola at the helm of the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing started in November 2015 when President Buhari inaugurated his Cabinet. Shortly after, the Minister held a media briefing where he outlined the Ministry’s focus in the three sectors. In Power, the promise was to increase power availability (Incremental Power), then advance it to steady supply and ultimately to uninterrupted supply nationwide. This he followed up with a Roadmap clearly setting out how he and his team intend to achieve this. In Works (Infrastructure), the promise was to increase road connectivity, decrease journey time and improve journey experience by completing on going projects; and in Housing, it was to build acceptable and affordable houses for the citizenry.   In summary: galvanize the economy through infrastructure development. Power: Plants and all Fact: at inception, the administration inherited 2,690 MW of power and only oversight through regulatory agencies instituted by law and on transmission of electricity which it is carrying out through the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN); the 26 power plants (23 gas and three hydro) having been privatized. What’s being done to achieve Incremental Power? With provision of funds and determination to fulfill the promises made at the media briefing on Incremental Power, resuscitation of the 29 MW Dadin Kowa Hydro-Power plant in Gombe State should be completed in November, going by the assurance given to the Minister in March this year, by the project manager. The 132KV lines to evacuate the power are in place. The 40 MW Gurara Power Station is expected to finish in the first quarter of next year and with the arrival of its standardization equipment, the 10MW Katsina Wind Mill is expected to finish before quarter two. The diesel and gas dual fired 215MW power plant in Kaduna is also expected to finish this year.   There is also another Power Emergency Project that President Buhari approved for General Electric to give 240MW of power in Afam, Rivers State. It is also expected to finish this year.  The  40 MW Kashimbilla Hydro Power Plant, in Taraba State, has been revived and now 99% completed . The works on the evacuation of power including transmission lines , switchyards and substations from the power plant to Takum , Wukari and the existing substation in Yandev is expected to be completed by the second quarter of 2018 subject to availability of funds. Work has resumed on the 700MW Zungeru hydroelectric power plant in Niger State, which was stalled by litigation for over three years .The nation moves closer to achieving power security with more alternatives to Gas fired plants. Work on the 450MW Azura Power Plant in Benin, was also stalled because the approvals and agreements required by the private companies to source for funds could not be signed for more than one year. President Buhari finally signed the required on assumption of office and this enabled the investors to commence construction. So also, the Mambilla hydro plant, which had been on the drawing board long before the coming of this Government.  The Minister in an interview with the Daily Trust last week explained that significant progress had been made in terms of project planning by working with various stakeholders and with a “No Objection “ certificate secured from the Bureau of Public Procurement on Monday 19th June ,work is set to commence on this long drawn yet all important project.. Energy Mix                       Against the backdrop of the country’s vulnerability on account of its over reliance on a single fuel source –Gas- for Power, perhaps, one of the best things that has happened to the  Power Sector since the present administration took office is  the development of an Energy Mix. Developed by the Ministry and unveiled at the National Council on Power Meeting held in Kaduna in July last year, the initiative has since set off a chain of activities on the diversification of the power generation. For example, the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Plc (NBET) on behalf of the Federal Government in July last year signed Power Purchase Agreements with 14 solar power developers to produce over 1,000MW of solar power. As a follow-up, two of the developers, Afrinegia Nigeria Limited and CT Cosmos Nigeria Limited, on 13th April signed the Put/Call Option Agreements (PCOA). Co-ordinated by NBET, the PCOA is a key aspect of the PPA to deal with any premature termination. Afrinegia Nigeria Limited plans to deliver 50MW while CT Cosmos will deliver 70MW to the grid.  There is also a plan for a new solar farm in Jigawa State, which is under procurement and planning. It is expected to add a minimum of another 1,000MW to the grid. In conjunction with other stakeholders discussions are also in progress with two coal developers who will add significant coal power to the grid. Individuals and businesses in the country are also being encouraged to partake in investing in small captive solar initiatives. The objective is to create an Energy Security for the country by diversifying the energy source. In addition, the policy encourages the siting of power plants close to the source of energy. At the Council meeting in Kaduna, a target of 2030 was set for the achievement of 55 per cent gas,16 per cent, solar, 15 per cent, large hydro project; 4 per cent, wind; 3 per cent, biomass and 3 per cent, coal. Government has led from the front in this aspect with the completion of the 1.2MW Clean Energy Photovoltaic System, a solar energy plant and first of its kind in Nigeria, to power the Lower Usman Dam power treatment plant, the main source of potable water to the Federal Capital Territory. Built in collaboration with the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA), the project’s first phase, commissioned in August 2016, is producing 1.2MW of solar energy. Policy actions From the outset, Fashola, a firm believer in the sanctity of contracts was not persuaded by call in some quarters for the outright cancellation of the privatization of the power sector. Rather, he believes that the process and the sector should be methodically reviewed and reformed. This is the sum and substance of the Power Sector Reform Programme  which focuses on introducing reforms, reducing losses in the distribution companies, enhancing the sector’s financial viability, increasing access to electricity services, and mobilizing private sector investment. With support secured from the Federal Executive Council, members of the National Assembly heading the Power Committees and the World Bank Group, the Programme is already being implemented, though many are still awaiting a “formal” launch. These policies include the inauguration of Commissioners for the National Electricity Regulation Commission (NERC) and the Rural Electrification Agency Board on the governance side as well as  the  NBET’s  N701 billion two-year Payment Assurance Guarantee approved  to ensure that all those who generate power to the grid are paid .  The Minister has, in exercise of his powers under Section 27 of the Electric Power Sector Reform Act 2005 directed NERC to permit four categories of customers to buy power directly from a licensee other than their electricity distribution companies, once they are dissatisfied with the performance of the latter. As Fashola puts it, “ it is like going to Nestle to get your products directly instead of waiting for the distributor.” (Please visit www.nercng.org, on “Eligibility in the Power Sector”.) Boosting transmission In terms of transmission capacity over which the public continues to express much anxiety, although the Ministry inherited over 100 uncompleted transmission projects, TCN is expanding and maintaining the transmission lines and completing projects started before the privatization. It has paid contractors and obtained the necessary approvals for them to return to work. The projects include the Irrua and Okada Transmission Projects, both in Edo State; Itu-Calabar Transmission Line,  Ikot Ekpene-Calabar, Ikot Ekpene-Alaoji, and Ikot-Ekpene-Ugwuaji Transmission Lines and the Damboa Transmission Power in Borno State which was stopped at the peak of insurgency. Also shipping companies and warehouse owners, who kept custody of containers abandoned by unpaid contractors for almost a decade, have begun releasing them. In fact, the first batch of over 387 containers was released to the contractors due provisions made in the 2016 budget. There is also a five-year plan to boost power transmission capacity to 20,000MW beginning from 5,500MW to 10,000MW in the next three years. The plan targets transmission capacity of 8,200MW by 2018 and 10,000MW by 2019. To achieve this, the Federal Government is working on actual numbers of transmission towers that would take the nation from 7,000MW to 20,000MW in each growth plan; how many kilometers of cables, wires, breakers and tons of steel would be required in each stage as well as securing Right of Ways, settle compensation issues and every other issue that could possibly impede the implementation plan. Meanwhile, 59 expansion projects are currently being worked on across the country.  The various transmission projects under the National Integrated Power Project (NIPP) are also being completed. As Fashola promised during the first anniversary of the administration, attention has recently been directed at rolling out the Rural Electrification Implementation Programme “to improve access to power for rural communities”. On 2 May, , the Minister inaugurated the Board of the Rural Electrification Agency (REA) and charged it with increasing access to electricity in the shortest possible time for the millions of Nigerian rural communities and villages as well as some urban cities yet to access electricity from the national grid. These communities lack access partly because the 330/132 KV and 132/33 KV lines (popularly called the high-tension wires), which the connection is often made through, run over long distances; the high cost of extending the lines to these communities, most of which are sparsely populated, and tariff being fixed, investment in them was not attractive. The Electricity Sector Reform Act, passed in 2005, set up the REA and mandated that the Implementation plan for rural electrification should be prepared within a year for Presidential Approval. That approval came 11 years late, with President Buhari’s stroke of the pen.  The implementation Plan which recommends a combination of grid extension and development of independent grids, using new technology such as solar, to make these communities, see light, so to speak, had been anchored on some existing projects such as the completion of over 2,000 uncompleted or abandoned grid extension projects which started life in 1999 as constituency projects. Government intends to resuscitate six of the over 50 small hydro dams across the country and activate their power component, which, the Minister says had received Federal Executive Council’s approval, had also been advertised, and had received Expressions of Interest which were now being evaluated. The third anchor is the development of Independent Power Plants (IPPs) in 37 federal universities and seven teaching hospitals in rural areas and the building of independent power grids from there to connect adjoining rural and unconnected communities. The Rural Electrification Agency (REA) signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Tuesday, 20th June 2017 with eight (8) Federal Universities and one Teaching Hospital for the first phase of the Federal Government’s Energizing Education Programme (EEP) which is also being used as anchor for the electrification of rural communities in the areas where the tertiary institutions are located. Safe, smooth roads It was in June 2016 that contractors were mobilized to return to   sites they had abandoned for over two years because of non-payment of contract fees. Today, work is going on in all states of the Federation in terms of road rehabilitation and reconstruction. , Between February and April the Minister had undertaken an inspection tour of these road projects in 34 States across the six geopolitical zones of the country. In the South-East, which was the first port of call, at least 600 kilometers of roads are under rehabilitation/ construction across the zone’s five states. They include the Enugu-Aba- Port Harcourt Expressway, which runs through Anambra, Enugu, Imo, Abia and Ebonyi States covering about 31 roads as well as construction of pedestrian bridges and flyovers, traffic signs and lights; the outstanding section of Onitsha-Enugu Road being handled by Reynolds Construction Company (RCC); Umana-Ndiagu-Adaebele-Udi Road in Ndiagu, Nsukka—Oboloafor -Ihamufu Road, Ninth Mile-Nsukka-Oboloafor Road, among others in Enugu State;Ohafia-Oso Road (In Ebonyi and Abia States: 11.7 km), Nnenwe-Uduma-Uburu Road, Section1 (14 km in Enugu/Ebonyi), rehabilitation of Abakaliki-Afikpo Road; Section 1 (20.5 km), rehabilitation of Abakaliki-Afikpo Road Section 11 (19.5 km) and Construction of Obubra-Ikwo-Onueke-Nkomoro-Agba-Ezekuna-Ogboji-Nara-Cross River Border Road (7 km), among others in Ebonyi;   Aba-Port Harcourt Dual Carriageway (section 11), Umuahia Tower-Aba Township Rail/Road Bridge Crossing (56.1Km), rehabilitation of Lokpanta-Umuahia Tower (59.5km) and rehabilitation of Calabar-Itu-Ikot-Ekpene-Aba-Owerri Section 111: Ikot-Ekpene-Ikot Umuoessien-Aba Road in Abia/Akwa-Ibom (43.2km), among others in Ebonyi while in Imo State, federal road projects currently on-going include the Owerri-Umuahia Road, Sections 1,11 and 111, the Ikot-Ekpene Border: Aba-Owerri Dualisation Road Section 1, Phase 1 (11.26km), Mbaise-Ngwa Road Ohase 1 (14 km), Amanwaozuzu-Uzoagba-Eziama-Orie-Amakohia Road (10km) and Oba-Nnewi-Okigwe Road Section 11, among others. On the Second Niger Bridge in Onitsha, Anambra State, the contractor is working to re-mobilize to site, having stopped due to lack of payment. In the North East, six federal roads are, among others, undergoing reconstruction or rehabilitation in Bauchi State, including the Suare-Azare, Azare-Potiskum Road, Ningi-Ajalokuna-Fudulamata Road, Jukun-Zaero Road and Zaero-Bassa-Ningi Road. In Gombe State, the two on-going road projects are the Gombe-Bauchi Federal Highway and the Gombe –Numan-Yola Road while in Taraba, Yobe and Maiduguri, the major roads under construction include the Kano-Maiduguri Dual  Carriageway that traverses three States. In the South-West the on-going road projects include the Ogbomosho-Oshogbo Road that connects Oyo State with neighbouring Osun, the Oyo-Ogbomosho Road that connects the State through to Kwara, the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway that connects Ibadan to Ogun and to Lagos and Lagos-Shagamu Expressway among others . Similarly, there are projects going on in the North-Central, the North- West and the South –South. When Fashola says the Federal Government is present in all States of the Federation, he means it because he has been on the roads to see the projects. Affordable, Acceptable houses In the Housing Sector, construction of houses under the National Housing Programme has commenced in 33 states, which have allocated land for the purpose. And in line with the decision to build houses which will suit the climatic, socio-cultural and land use peculiarities of the people, the designs of one, two and three-bedroom bungalows have been adopted for the Northern states while the designs of one, two and three bedroom blocks of flats have been adopted for Southern states. In addition, the Ministry has also identified inputs such as doors, windows, tiles, paint and roofing materials that could be made locally and as earlier resolved by the Minister that only Made-in-Nigeria inputs will be used unless there is no local production capacity. To provide investment information for local manufacturers, the ministry has done some inventory of quantities of materials needed in the project. Based on that inventory, 22,288 doors; 27,849 windows; 3,502 water cisterns; 3,502 wash hand basins; 2,830 kitchen sinks; 261,299 sq. metres of floor tiles; 178, 680 Sq. metres of wall tiles; 561,119 litres of paints; and 342,960 Sq. metres of roofing materials would be needed in the first phase of construction which will also require 413,000 man days of skilled labour, and 440,000 man days of unskilled labour. This, of course, means continuous job for local manufacturers and artisans. Job creation The whole essence of the on-going infrastructure renewal, whether in the Power, Works or Housing sector, is, first, to stimulate jobs. This purpose has been achieved to a very significant extent. As announced by the Minister recently at an account of stewardship rendering Town Hall Meeting, the Ministry generated 193,469 jobs (9,000 direct and 60,000 indirect in Power; 17,749 direct and 52,000 indirect in Works and 13,680 direct and 41,040 indirect in Housing) while also empowering 542 local contractors during the 2016 budget year. During his tour, the Minister engaged with these young men and women, working to deliver on the contracts, delivering service which will touch the lives of the greatest number of the people and in so doing restore the country’s economy to the path of growth and prosperity. On each of the stops Fashola would also dutifully deliver the message of his principal, President Muhammadu Buhari’s gratitude and commendation to the teeming young men and women for working hard to rebuild Nigeria and contributing to the economic recovery from a recession spun by several years of profligacy. Incredible strength, work ethic Whether sitting through grueling meetings to make peace and get projects or contracts (which had stalled for years before his assumption of office), moving from one power plant or Transmission station to chair going again, chairing the monthly meetings of the Power Sector Operators, in different cities and states or enduring hours of bus travelling by road to inspect roads, housing or power projects under his watch, Fashola displays a remarkable strength of character and intellect as well as energy. Often asked how he manages his naturally crowded schedule, the Minister would respond to the effect that he takes himself and any assignment he accepts seriously. Now, you can’t be focused without being serious and so l am closing by wishing my Boss many more years of focused service to our fatherland in sterling health. Happy Birthday BRF!  
29 June, 2017
National Assembly’s Recourse To Personal Attacks Fails To Address The Issues I Raised In The National Interest – Fashola *  Says nation in trouble if lawmaker mistakes budgetary appropriation as cash *  Minister insists no concession agreement exists on Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, Second Niger Bridge *  Asks Lawmakers to address the slashing of budgetary allocation to key power, infrastructure projects nationwide The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola SAN has expressed deep concern over the recourse of the National Assembly’s Spokespersons to name calling over his observations on the 2017 Budget. In a Press Release signed by his Special Adviser on Media, Mr Hakeem Bello, the Minister said he was worried that the National Assembly Spokespersons failed to address the fundamental points about development- hindering whimsical cuts in the allocations to several vital projects under the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing as well as other Ministries. Fashola had, in a recent interview while acknowledging that Legislators could contribute to budget making, disagreed with the practice where the legislative arm of Government unilaterally alters the Budget after putting members of the Executive through Budget Defence Sessions and Committee Hearings to the extent that some of the projects proposed would have become materially altered. While acknowledging the need for legislative input from the representatives of the people to bring forward their developmental aspirations  before and during the Budget production process, the Minister had observed that it amounted to a waste of tax payers money and an unnecessary distortion of orderly planning and development  for all sections of the country, for lawmakers to unilaterally insert items not under the Exclusive or Concurrent lists of the Constitution like boreholes and streetlights after putting Ministries , Departments and Agencies  (MDAs) through the process of Budget Defence. Specifically with regards to the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing, Fashola listed the Lagos- Ibadan Expressway, the Bodo- Bonny road, the Kano-Maiduguri road, the Second Niger Bridge and the long drawn Mambilla  Hydropower Project among others as those that the National Assembly materially  altered the allocations in favour of scores of boreholes and primary health care centres  which were never discussed during the Ministerial Budget Defence before Parliament. In their responses both the Spokespersons of the Senate and the House of Representatives accused the Minister of spreading “Half-Truths” and making “Fallacious “ statements because he (Fashola) should have known that they only interfered with projects that had concession agreements and private sector funding components. They also accused the Minister of wanting to hold on to such projects in order that he may continue to award contracts. However, while dismissing the allegations in the course of an official trip outside the country, Fashola said it was sad that the lawmakers would resort to name calling even without understanding the facts of what they were getting into. Taking the projects which the lawmakers chose to focus on one after the other, the Minister insisted that there is no subsisting concession agreement on the Lagos – Ibadan Expressway adding that what the Infrastructure Construction Regulatory Commission (ICRC) has is a financing agreement from a consortium of banks which is like a loan that still has to be paid back through budgetary provisions. There is no fallacy or half truth in the allegation that the budgets were reduced. The Spokespersons admitted this much and now sought to rationalize it by a concession or financing arrangement that has failed to build the road since 2006. The biggest momentum seen on the road was in 2016. In the case of the Second Niger Bridge where one of the Spokespersons alleged that the provision in 2016 budget was not spent and had to be returned, Fashola said that this displays very stark and worrisome gaps in knowledge of the Spokesperson about the budget process he was addressing. According to him, a budget is not cash. It is an approval of estimates of expenditure to be financed by cash from the Ministry of Finance. The Ministry of Finance has not yet released any cash for the Second Niger Bridge, so no money was returned. Three phases of Early Works of piling and foundation was approved and financed by the previous Government in the hope that a concession will finally be issued, which has not happened because concessionaires have not been able to raise finance. The continuation of Early Works IV could not start in May 2016 when the budget was passed because of high water level in the River Niger in the rainy season. The contract was only approved by the Federal Executive Council in the first quarter of 2017 and the contractor is awaiting payment. Dismissing the allegation that the Ministry under him was holding on to projects that could be funded through Public Private Partnerships (PPP) so that he could award contracts as a tissue of lies, the Minister said from Day One of his assumption of office, he made it clear publicly and privately that his priority would be to finish as many of the several hundreds of projects that his Ministry inherited which had not been  funded for close to three years. According to Fashola, if the Spokesperson   was in tune with the Public Procurement Law which the National Assembly passed, he would realize that the Minister has no unilateral power to award such contracts whose values are in Billions of Naira, adding that all the new projects presented to the Federal Executive Council for approval were either Federal roads requested by State Governments or those put in the Budget by the Legislators to service their constituencies. Fashola stated that the focus on contracts by the Spokesperson is probably a Freudian slip that reveals his mindset and interests; when indeed he should be focused on Developmental projects that strengthen the economy, which is the focus of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan endorsed by the legislature. Also responding to the issues that the Budget for the Mambila Power Project was slashed because it contained a “ whooping N17 bn” for Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), the Minister said there was indeed a mis-description of that particular Expenditure Head which could have happened during the classification of so many thousands of Budget heads in the Budget estimates. According to him, what was described as a Budget Head for EIA was actually the nation’s counterpart funding to the China- EXIM loan to fund the building of the Mambila Project , adding that this was brought to his attention only after it had been slashed and that  if the intention was not to slash arbitrarily it should have been brought to his attention to explain.  “At a joint meeting convened at the instance of the Budget Minister when I complained that the budget was slashed, the issue of EIA was brought to my attention and I explained what it was meant for,” Fashola said. On the issue of the N20 Billion provision in the Ministry’s Budget which the Spokesperson alleged that the Minister failed to give details of, Fashola said the Spokesperson is hiding behind a finger. The Minister explained that it was a very basic principle of good planning to make provision for unforeseen contingencies adding that in the 2016 Budget , a similar provision  enabled the Ministry to respond to the failures of the Tamburawa Bridge in Sokoto, the Ijora Bridge in Lagos and the Gada Hudu Bridge in Koto Karfe along the Abuja – Lokoja Highway. Similarly, the Ministry was able to pay N1BN to the Contractor handling the Suleja to Minna road. The recent failures caused by flooding along Tegina-Mokwa-Jebba road and Tatabu in Niger State could not have been provided because they were not foreseen and there may be more. “ This is what good planning is about ,“ Fashola said. Noting that the Senate Spokesperson missed the point in the haste to cast aspersions on him because he was not at the meetings he was speaking about, Fashola said he would have expected a more sober approach to the matter. “ In any event, allegations of half truth is only a flawed response to the constitutional and developmental issues that have plagued Nigeria from 1999 about how to budget for the critical infrastructure in Nigeria. It shows the conflict between the Executive that wants to build big Federal Highways; Bridges ; Power Plants;  Rail; and Dams on one hand and Parliament that wants to do small things like Bore holes , Health Centres , Street lights and supplying grinding machines ,” he said. According to the Minister, being an institutional and not a personal issue, it won’t be out of place to seek a resolution of the conflict at the Supreme Court in order to protect the country’s future, because it is a clear conflict about how best to serve the people. “As long as Budgets planned to deliver life changing infrastructure are cut into small pieces, Nigeria will continue to have small projects that are not life changing , and big projects that have not been completed in 17 years . If a project would cost N15 Billion and the contractor gets only a fraction of that, then things won’t move. Success should be defined by how many projects an administration is able to complete or set on the path of irreversible completion and not how many poorly funded contracts are awarded,” he said.
27 June, 2017
Records 103 to 105 of 140
PUBLIC ANNOUNCEMENT
5 October, 2018

APC CONVENTION SATURDAY, 6TH OCTORBER, 2018

This is to inform FCT Residents, Visitors and Motorists that due to the National Convention of the All Progressives Congress, APC slated for Saturday, 6th October 2018 at the Eagle Square, Abuja, an unusual influx of human and vehicular traffic will be experienced within the city with the attendant traffic congestion in and around the venue of the convention.

To this effect all vehicular movement through Shehu Shagari Way from the early hours of Saturday, 6th October, 2018 to Sunday, 7th October  will be diverted at Ralph Sodeinde Street by Bullet Building to link Central Business District. Motorists will also be diverted at Kur Mohammed Street and Constitution Avenue at Bayelsa House to Central Business District.

Traffic on Ahmadu Bello Way will equally be diverted at Ralph Sodeinde Street by Finance Junction to Central Business District. Motorists will also be diverted at Kur Mohammed Street or Constitution Avenue by Benue Building to link Central Business District.

The Federal Capital Territory Administration have mobilized Officers of the Police, FRSC, FCT Directorate of Road Traffic Service and other relevant Traffic Enforcement Agencies to various flash points to ensure seamless traffic flow.

Parking has been made available at the National Stadium for ALL Delegates coming from outside Abuja from where they will be conveyed to the venue by dedicated Buses.

In the same vein, ALL Delegates from within the FCT should converge at the Old Parade Ground  from where they will be conveyed to the venue.

Please note that parking around the Eagle Square and its environs will not be tolerated as offending vehicles will be removed.

The understanding of the public is hereby solicited

Secretary, Transportation Secretariat
Federal Capital Territory

OTHER NEWS
16 February, 2019

FG To Erring Contractors, Up Your Games Or Face Sanctions

The Zonal Director of the National Housing Programme in the North- West, Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing, Architect Joseph Toluhi, has urged erring contractors handling the on going construction of housing project in Kebbi State to step up their games or face necessary sanctions.

He noted that contractors, who fails to perform diligently on the job will have to give way for others to be engaged, adding that relevant clauses in the contract agreement can be invoke for appropriate sanctions.

This was contained in a statement by the Zonal Director on Wednesday in Biriin Kebbi during the North-West inspection tour to the project site.

Toluhi stated that the federal government is committed to provide decent and affordable housing to its teeming population and reduce the housing deficit in the country, adding that the NHP project is designed for the medium income earners who have the affordable means to acquire these houses across the nation.

The National Housing Programme, Kebbi State consist of 76 housing units of 1bedroom, 2 bedrooms and 3 bedrooms semi-detached bungalows, are being handled by 19 indigenous contractors.

In a similar development, the zonal inspection team led by Toluhi also visited the National Housing Programme site in Sokoto State to have on-the-spot assessment of the on going construction works which has reached 95 per cent completion stage.

“I must say that I am pleased and happy with the level of progress of work on this site because we have a very high level of competition. Most of the building here have been completed”. He noted that out of 20 contractors engaged, 12 of them have already been completed while four are yet to be roofed.

According to him, “this means, we are ready to move into these buildings. The infrastructure such as water supply, road arterial and water supply have reached a very high level of completion”.

The Team Leader in Sokoto State, Mr lliya Kastuda also confirmed that construction work has reached 95 percent completion, adding that there is provision of worship centers, school, market to give necessary comfort and police post to ensure adequate security within the housing estate.

The zonal Director and other officials of the Ministry inspected a similar project in Gusau, Zamfara State, which is put at 65% completion stage. He however expressed disappointment in the poor quality of job done, stressing that government will not tolerate sub-standard jobs from any contractor.

 

Records 1 to 1 of 25
SPEECHES
1 February, 2019

Speech Delivered By H.E, Babatunde Raji Fashola, SAN At Press Briefing On National Infrastructure Maintenance Framework At Federal Ministry Of Power, Works And Housing Headquarters Mabushi, Abuja

I welcome you warmly to this press briefing to share information about two very important developments that occurred in the month of January 2019.

The first was that on the 9th January 2019, the Federal Executive Council, Nigeria's highest decision making organ of the Executive arm of government approved a National Maintenance Framework for public buildings.

The second is that on the 24th January 2019, President Muhammad Buhari signed into law a bill to prohibit discrimination against persons living with disabilities which included provisions for specific actions that must be taken within a period of 5 (FIVE) years to provide opportunities for such persons to live as normal a life as possible.

This briefing is meant to discuss what these developments mean for Nigeria and Nigerians, and to highlight the possibilities that they offer for our way of life and our economy.

National Maintenance Framework for Public Buildings

Let me start with the National Maintenance Framework on Public Buildings and first point out that for now, this only applies to public buildings but will ultimately extend to other public assets like roads, bridges, rail, power installations and other infrastructure of a public nature.

What the FEC approval means is that after decades of agonizing about lack of maintenance, the Buhari government has chosen to act.

This is policy decision of enormous profundity because the records do not indicate that any such policy decision has previously been taken at the federal level.

The decision was provoked by a memorandum from the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing that challenged the conventional thinking that "Nigeria does not have a maintenance culture".

The memorandum argued and FEC agreed, that maintenance of infrastructure whether public or private, is not a cultural issue but an economic one.

The memorandum showed that in the built industry, only about 23% of the workforce is employed by Design (6%) and Construction (15%), Governance (2%) , while the remaining 77% are employed by Maintenance and operation.

Council was persuaded to accept that while skill training and vocational centres exist almost nationwide for training artisans like plumbers, painters, bricklayers, welders, tilers, electricians etc., there is a lack of National policy that makes the practice of these vocations economically worthwhile on a sustainable basis.

The available data showed that many people trained in these vocations often resort to earning a living by resorting to other vocations in which they do not have a training, such as riding motor-cycles and tri-cycles in order to make a living.

Therefore, the federal government’s decision on maintenance is an economic one, to empower Nigerians at the base of the economic pyramid who are artisans, those at the middle of the pyramid who own small businesses, SMEs who are involved in manufacturing of building and allied materials.

What it entails is that:

* Site assessment of the affected buildings will have to be conducted, measurement are to be taken, valuation conducted and data is collated. This on its own requires the employment of people to carry out this process and therefore jobs will be created from the very first step.

* It will also provide for credible data such as lettable space, value of the property and so on which can form the basis of the economic decisions or even actions in emergency periods.

* Condition assessment is the next step that requires people to be trained and employed to assess the conditions of affected buildings from foundation to roof and for mechanical and electrical sustainability for purpose.

* In one of our sample buildings leading up to the memorandum to FEC, we found out that out of 63 air-conditioning units, 11 required replacement or repairs. We also identified windows, doors, tiles, roofing materials, plastering works that required replacement or repair.

* The maintenance program is then developed from these assessments as to what jobs need to be done to restore the building to fitness, what needs to be replaced and what needs to be repaired.

* This is the basis for the award of the maintenance contract following the existing procurement law.

* This provides a window of opportunity for small businesses who are into facility management and for young graduates of building tech, architecture, engineering and even technical schools to register for these contracts.

* Successful bidders are then in a position to employ artisans to execute the maintenance contract they have won in the bid.

* Each ministry, department and agency will be responsible for its own procurement for its own building  after training of their designated personnel by the staff of the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing who will guide them through the framework approved by FEC.

* Because data is critical to the programme, each MDA will file data with the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing who will centrally manage data and use it to advise government and brief the public, while the MDA reserves the right to keep its own data.

* The award of contracts will not only drive employment for artisans, it will drive demand of manufacturing and suppliers of parts like wood, pipes, paint, tiles, electrical fittings, windows and tools, in addition to those of  cleaning items like soap, detergent, polish, varnish etc.

This is the economy that we see ahead as we set out to implement this approval starting from buildings, and as I said, and extending to roads, rail, bridges etc. as we progress.

Our pilot programme covered 9 buildings  comprising a Federal government college, a Federal Hospital,  a Federal Court building, a federal prison, a federal secretariat and our office buildings at our headquarters here in Mabushi.

The pilot survey showed that these 9 (Nine) buildings will cost N40.3 billion to reconstruct, while it will cost N922.8m per annum to maintain them which is about   2.3 % of the cost of replacement.

Just these 9 (NINE) buildings will require about 448 people to keep them well maintained a year. For example, the school will require at least 30 people to be employed per school for maintenance; and the federal government owns 104 Unity schools which potentially will require 30 X 104 = 3,120.

So you can see the economy we see when this extends to all our hospitals, all our courts, all our prisons, all our police stations, all our universities and covers all public buildings.

This is an economic choice by this government to drive the small business sector, to drive skill utilization and to move the economy from growth without jobs to growth driven by new jobs that reward services.

But as if this was not enough, President Buhari raised the bar for construction, services and a new way of life for Nigerians when he signed the law to protect people living with disability from discrimination and exclusion.

We have 5 years to comply, and this requires that all our buildings must have lifts and ramps. (By this I mean well designed ramps for people confined to their wheelchairs, not hills they cannot use on their own).

We must modify all our toilets with support for our brothers and sisters who are living with disabilities, as we must build sidewalks for them to use our roads without colliding with vehicles.

Our airports and parking lots in buildings must become compliant with international best practice by providing corridors and facilities for people living with disabilities at arrival and departure points, while a minimum number of slots clearly designated must be provided for vehicles owned by people living with disabilities.

This is another opportunity for jobs to re-design, to re-model, to retrofit all our assets nationwide to comply with the law as signed by Mr President.

Ladies and gentlemen, this is the Nigeria that beckons upon us from today and the immediate future. A Nigeria where public infrastructure works because they are maintained.

A Nigeria where everybody has a secure sense of belonging because they can use their skills and labour to earn a decent income and retain their dignity.

A Nigeria where government cares for the people living with disability by providing the basic minimum facilities that gives them a sense of belonging to demonstrate their ability.

Government has taken the leadership role to provide the policy and the how to make this Nigeria possible.

It is now your responsibility and mine to take ownership of this platform of opportunities and make it work for all of us.

Thank you for listening.

Babatunde Raji Fashola, SAN
Honourable Minister of Power, Works and Housing

Thursday 31st January 2019

Records 1 to 1 of 39
Photo News
15 February, 2019

COMMISSIONED 60KW GRID CONNECTED HYBRID SOLAR PV MINI GRID POWER PROJECT IN TORANKAWA VILLAGE YABO LGA SOKOTO STATE

The recently commissioned 60KW Grid Connected Hybrid Solar PV Mini Grid Power project in Torankawa village Yabo LGA Sokoto State Initiated by the Ministry of Power Works and Housing Power Sector under the Renewable Energy Micro Utility REMU Programme which was commissioned on Tuesday 12th February 2019

Click To View More Pictures

Power News
Photo News
1 February, 2019

FASHOLA ADDRESSES THE PRESS ON THE NATIONAL PUBLIC BUILDINGS MAINTENANCE POLICY RECENTLY APPROVED BY THE FEDERAL EXECUTIVE COUNCIL IN ABUJA

Hon Minister of Power Works Housing Mr Babatunde Fashola SAN 2nd left Permanent Secretary Works Housing Mr Mohammed Bukar 2nd right Chairman Committee on Housing House of Representatives Hon Mahmud Mohammed right Deputy Chairman Committee on Works Hon Dr Abubakar Kannike left shortly after the Hon Minister s Press Briefing on the National Public Building Maintenance Policy recently approved by the Federal Executive Council at the Ministry of Power Works Housing Headquarters Mabushi Abuja on Thursday 31st January 2019

Click To View More Pictures

Records 1 to 4 of 47 Download(s)