FEDERAL MINISTRY OF POWER, WORKS & HOUSING

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17 July, 2018

Third Mainland Bridge To Be Shut For Three Days For Assessment

* Three-day closure begins from July 27 while repairs begin after report of assessment is received to determine extent of deterioration
* “We will try to reduce the period of closure as much as possible. But this is ultimately a choice between peoples’ safety”, says Fashola
* “There was a signed statement from my office and it did not contain 27 months”, he maintains

The Third Mainland Bridge in Lagos will be closed to traffic for three days from July 27, 2018, for investigative work to be conducted to assess the current condition of the Bridge, the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola SAN, has explained in Abuja.

Fashola, who spoke, Monday, as Guest on the Channels Television breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily in the Federal Capital Territory, said the shutdown was necessary in order to ascertain whether there had been any material deterioration between the period the first procurement for maintenance of the Bridge was approved and now adding that the three days would be used “to really do an examination just to be sure that there has been no material deterioration beyond what we procured”.

The Minister, who debunked the misreporting in some sections of the media that the Bridge would be closed for 27 months, declared, “The first message we sent out was that it was going to be closed for three days from the 27th of July”, adding that the duration of maintenance would only be determined after the report of the investigative work has been received and extent of deterioration known.

He said the investigation would have been carried out earlier but the need to reduce the inconveniences that would accompany the closure compelled government to shift the time to a more convenient period when children would be on vacation and when fewer vehicles were likely to be on the Bridge.

“We thought that if we allowed the children to go on vacation first it would reduce the number of vehicles that needed necessarily to be on the road and ultimately reduce the amount of inconvenience. But now we are torn between maintenance and safety and peoples’ convenience”, Fashola said adding, “Essentially the first three days at the end of this month, as issued in our Press Statement, is for investigative work to be conducted to assess the current condition”.

The Minister, who said it was only after the assessment of the amount of maintenance work involved that government engineers and the contracting firms would lay out the plan of work, added, “I think it is later in the year or early next year that the repairs will then start”, pointing out that some of the equipment and materials have to be imported.

Noting that the repairs would “imminently compel some closure”, Fashola, who recalled that the Bridge had been closed for repairs in the past when he was Governor, pointed out that it was shut down for 12 weeks, adding, “We will try to reduce the period of closure as much as possible. But this is ultimately a choice between peoples’ safety; that bridge must not collapse and it needs maintenance”.

“It has been built now going up to a period of 30 years and if you recall, the maintenance that was done at that time was not completed because the budget was cut and that was why they did it in phases. So we are back to what we should have done before. It is costing more but it needs to be done”, he said.

Reiterating that he was currently not in the position to say how long the maintenance would last until the receipt of the report from the investigation and the amount of damage determined, declared, “For now, the first three days is what I can speak of and it is when we get the report and determine the extent of damage that we will now come back to the public and tell them and say definitively how long it will be”.

“I am not in the position to say it now until that report comes back to us. But what will happen at the end of July is three days”, he said, adding that those peddling the 27 months rumour about the duration of repairs might have mistaken the “July 27th” date mentioned in the government Press Statement for 27 months. “There was a signed statement from my office and it did not contain 27 months”, he said.

Fashola, who admonished the Media, both traditional and social, to endeavour to be more accurate in their reportage especially of such sensitive issues, expressed regrets that many of the nation’s public assets have remained unmaintained for decades citing the Ijora Bridge which he recalled collapsed some time ago due to lack of maintenance after 40 years plus.

Housing Is A Catalyst For Development And Sustainable Economic Growth Says Fashola The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Raji Fashola, SAN, has said that the present Administration has taken leadership role by demonstrating how provision of affordable housing can catalyze development and sustainable economic growth in Nigeria. Fashola explained that President Buhari has used the National Housing Programme (NHP), presently active in 34 States of the federation in the last three years, as one of the tools to grow the economy and extricate the nation from recession.   According to him, ‘’we are able to employ, on the average, a thousand people at each of the 34 NHP sites, and this is only for the pilot stage’’. The Minister stated this at the recently concluded 7th Meeting of the National Council on Lands, Housing and Urban Development held at the Banquet Hall, Gombe International Hotel, Gombe State with the theme ‘Provision of Affordable Housing: A Catalyst for Development and Sustainable Economic Growth’. Speaking at the Council, Fashola urged Policy Makers and government at all levels to make efforts in consolidating on the achievements of the present government by building more houses and also proffer policies to address urbanization. He said that one of such policies is to consciously redistribute wealth and opportunities by strong commitments to programs like Agriculture and Mining. The Minister stated that from his trips across the nation, ‘’I can tell you categorically that President Buhari’s investment in infrastructural development is impacting on the nations urbanization challenge in a positive way’’. In his remarks, the Special Guest of Honour and the Host Governor, the Executive Governor of Gombe State, H.E. Alhaji Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo, commended the Ministry for choosing Gombe State as host, assuring that the Council meeting was bound to address the challenges facing Land Administration, Housing and Urban Development to enable the sector contribute meaningfully to the socio-economic development of the nation. Dankwambo stated that access to quality and affordable housing is not only fundamental to the health and well being of families and communities, but critical to human survival. He urged Government at all levels to work assiduously in ensuring provision of affordable housing, particularly for the low and modest income earners in the country. While he commended the efforts of the Federal Government in the construction of mass housing under the National Housing Programme (NHP), stating  that the state government has also consolidated on these gains with the construction of over  1, 000 housing units, fully completed and allocated to civil servants and the general public in the state. Earlier, while addressing the meeting of the Permanent Secretaries at the state level and other stakeholders, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, (Works & Housing) Mohammed Bukar, said that the provision of affordable housing rest on the shoulders of all stakeholders in the industry, adding that ‘it is a collective duty to provide leadership for achieving the set objective’. Bukar enjoined all stakeholders to make judicious use of the opportunity provided by the 7th Meeting of the National Council on Lands, Housing and Urban Development to deliberate on the memoranda submitted for consideration towards formulating and strengthening policies that will address the challenges in the built environment and making housing affordable to all Nigerians. In her goodwill message, the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Mrs Winfred Oyo-Ita, represented by the Permanent Secretary, Service Welfare, Mrs Didi Walson Jack, stated that the Council meeting is an auspicious moment bringing together key stakeholders in the housing sector to deliberate on policy issues geared towards the full delivery of mass housing. She commended the ministry for initiating and promoting the discuss on affordable housing in Nigeria According to her, the Federal Executive Council in consideration of the need to reposition the civil service for greater productivity approved the Federal Civil Service Strategy and Implementation Plan, adding that one of the 8 goals of the Plan is to enhance the value reposition of Civil Servants via improving their access to affordable housing. She stressed that this initiative led to the creation of the Federal Integrated Staff Housing (FISH) programme by the Head of Service, which has assisted over       35, 000 civil servants to acquire homes through the provision of mortgage with a long term repayment plan. The Council meeting ended with the issuance of a Communiqué unanimously agreed by all stakeholders to chat the way forward and also formulate a holistic Housing Policy for development and sustainable economic growth in Nigeria. A total number of Thirty-four (34) memoranda were received and considered under the following four thematic groups: i.                     Policy, Finance, Capacity Building for Affordable Housing Delivery; ii.                   Building Consideration and Institutional Strengthening for Affordable Housing Provision; iii.                  Urban Planning Provision for Affordable Housing; and iv.                 Lands and Infrastructure Consideration for Affordable Housing.
16 July, 2018
FEC Approves Reconstruction Of Roads In The Country The Federal Executive Council (FEC) presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday approved N35.6billion for reconstruction of roads and bridge in the country. The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, disclosed this when he briefed State House correspondents at the end of the Council’s meeting held at the Presidential Villa, Abuja. The Minister said N8.9 billion of the amount was approved for construction of Ikom bridge and road in Calabar, Cross River. According to him, the road and bridge has a completion period of 24 months and when completed, will create access to the port for trailers to move freely with their containers. The Minister said that N11.78 billion was approved for Nguru –Gashua – Balmari road in Yobe State, while N8.6 billion was approved for Ilorin – Kishi road in Kwara State. He said the Council also approved N5.4 billion for another road project in Abia State, He disclosed that N933 million was also approved for automatic meter reading equipment for Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN). “The other project that was approved relates to power and this is the approval to procure at the request of the TCN an automatic meter reading machine and services – that will include the installation of equipment and also the training of engineers, auditors, IT engineers who will operate and maintain the system. “The total installation period is 18 months, supply and installation,’’ he said. According to Fashola, the wholesale meters are different from the retail meters, saying that smooth implementation of the wholesale meters would help in dispute resolution as data can be easily produced online and eliminate all delays in the system. The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, who fielded a question on the controversy surrounding NYSC exemption certificate of the Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun, said the federal government had already responded to the allegation via statement from the NYSC. He said: “The government has spoken. NYSC is part of government and I have nothing to add to what the NYSC has said.’’
12 July, 2018
Act To Make Discos Deliver On Responsibilities To Consumers, Fashola Directs NERC *Minister asks NERC to enforce DisCos meter supply contract, improvement on their distribution equipment, capacity to take more powers from GenCos *Also directs NBET to work with BPE to improve DisCos collection remittance and  pay their debts to help promote stability in the Sector *Says complaints coming to Government over metering, estimated billing and mass disconnections cannot continue *I remain convinced that privatization is way forward- FASHOLA The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola SAN, Monday directed the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) to immediately step in to ensure that Electricity Distribution Companies (DisCos) improve on their distribution equipment and increase capacity to enable them optimize the use of electrical resources by the Generation Companies (GenCos). Fashola, who spoke at a Press Briefing on the “Power Sector State of Play, Next Steps and Policy Directives”, also directed NERC to enforce the contract of DisCos to supply meters and act to ensure the urgent speedy supply and installation of meters with a view to eliminating estimated billing and promote efficient industry and market structures. The Minister, who said the improvement in their distribution equipment and increase in capacity would enable the DisCos take up the available 2,000MW difference between the generation capacity of the GenCos and the distribution capacity of the DisCos, also directed the Regulatory Commission to stop DisCos from threatening private entrepreneurs from entering the market to supply consumers whom they are unable to supply. Instead, according the Minister, such entrepreneurs should be licensed by the Commission subject to its terms and conditions “in order to promote competition and private sector participation and avoid a private monopoly of power”, adding that as clearly stated in Section 71(6) of the Electric Power Sector Reform Act (EPSRA) dealing with Terms and Conditions of licenses, “no exclusivity or monopoly was intended for a license holder such as GenCos or DisCos”. The aforementioned Section states that, “Unless expressly indicated in the license, the grant of a license shall not hinder or restrict the grant of a license to another person for a like purpose and, in the absence of such an express indication, the licensee shall not claim any exclusivity, provided that the commission may allow a licensed activity to be exclusive for all or part of the period of the license for a specific purpose, for a geographical area, or for some combination of the foregoing”. Noting that the Regulatory Commission has not issued any such exclusive license to any DisCo, Fashola declared, “If we take into consideration that, after five years of privatization, there are still people and businesses who do not have power or enough power, common sense and public interest demands that we must not resist ordinary people, small businesses like shops and markets from seeking alternative sources of energy”. “The truth is that they already have these sources of alternative energy, in small petrol and diesel generators that cost them about N100 per kilowatt hour. If the DISCOs are not resisting the generator sellers who are contributing to pollution, what is the logic of resisting small entrepreneurs bringing mini gas plants to supply a market need?”, the Minister argued, pointing out that for now, the nation’s developmental needs could not wait “for businessmen who are not yet ready to serve”. Urging NERC “to act with dispatch”, Fashola said the stated policy statements were made in the National interest, public good, the need to support small businesses, provide access to power for ordinary people and increase productivity adding, however, that although he was not unmindful of concerns about loss of market or customers by DISCOs such concerns must be balanced against national interest and that with improvement in their businesses, they would be in a position to use their economies of scale of large volumes of power to buy out or out-price the small entrepreneurs. The Minister implored members of the public who seek more information “to get a copy of EPSRA and read its simple provisions”, adding that the Act confers extensive regulatory powers on NERC “including the power in Sections 73 and 74, to amend or cancel a license if the licensee is unable to discharge  the duties and obligations imposed by the license”. Fashola also directed NBET, the bulk trader, to work with Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), to fashion out ways to ensure that the DisCos improve their collection remittance and also start to pay their debts saying this would help to promote stability in the Sector. “This business cannot progress if debtors do not pay their debts”, he said. Stating, however, that it is neither his intention nor that of Government to take over the business of the DisCos, the Minister declared, “On the contrary, it is Government’s desire to see DISCOs thrive and flourish in a competitive environment”, adding, “In the period when they are not yet ready, willing, or able, life must go on and we must find solutions and substitutes as we have seen in other sectors”. Such sectors, he said, include the Broadcasting, Newspaper and Telecommunication Sectors where, according to him, “those who could not compete conceded and left the stage gloriously without breaking down the system”, while those who could compete have brought better living conditions to Nigerians. Saying that the policy directives should not be seen as anti-Privatization, Fashola, who said they were meant to ginger all stakeholders to brace up to their responsibilities to serve the people, added, “I remain convinced that Privatization is the way forward. Privatization has brought us mega value in Broadcasting; it has brought us better value in Newspapers, Telecommunications and Banking and other sectors of our national life and I remain convinced that it will deliver in Power”. “This is not a time to trade blames, because there is enough to go round; rather it is a time to reiterate everybody's responsibility and urge all of us to brace up, to do what we are obliged to do, which is to serve the people, he said, adding, “I suspect that these facts may appear like a red flag to the bulls of anti-privatization, but I remain convinced that privatization is the way forward”.       Recalling that when the public complained about the tariff approved by NERC, he was the one that stood in the forefront of explaining to the public even though it was the Discos who collect the tariff, Fashola declared, “In the face of this picture, where we have power to sell, with more to come, the number of complaints coming to Government for meters, which the DISCOs should supply, and for estimated billings, and mass disconnections when not everybody is owing, cannot continue”. “Government must act, and will do so. The DisCos bought these assets with their eyes opened, and they must compete to deliver or exit”, Fashola declared, adding that Small businesses who need very little power are not getting enough because the DisCos could not take the power to them. The Minister expressed dismay that investment of GenCos was threatened because they could not utilize the capacity they have installed, adding that in order to improve service to small businesses, Government, acting through the Rural Electrification Agency (REA), was linking Small Power Entrepreneurs with markets like Ariaria in Aba, Sabon Gari Market in Kano, and Sura Market in Lagos which, according to him, contain approximately 37,000, 13,000, and 1,047 shops respectively, which are being metered by the small entrepreneurs who have offered to replace the generators of traders with more efficient power and meters. According to the Minister, there are 15 markets in all which if successfully implemented would provide power to 85,485 shops, empower 205,000 SMEs and create 2,000 jobs during the installation and after in operation and maintenance adding, “The DisCos are agitating that this should not happen, yet they offer no solution.” On what government has been doing to assist the DisCos and other operators to deliver power, Fashola said as facilitator of business and enabler of the Private Sector government had, through the Central Bank of Nigeria, made available the sum of N213 Billion to the Power Sector at a concessionary interest rate, below market rate, to GenCos and DisCos adding, however, that some DisCos had shied away from taking the facility. According to him, “Probably because of the source of fund conditions, such as opening of letters of credit attached to the performance, some DisCos have not taken the money”, adding that currently  NERC detected “an unauthorized use of money by the Ibadan DisCo” and was now taking some remedial measures. The Minister said Government has also responded to claims of debts owed by Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of government to DisCos before the present administration, a debt which, he said, “was alleged to be in the region of over N70Billion adding that at the cost to government, “several hundreds of thousands of bills, amounting to about 450,000 bills, were verified” while government has ascertained that N27 Billion was owed by Federal MDAs to DisCos. Prior to the tenure of this administration, he said, GenCos and Gas suppliers who produce power, were being underpaid by NBET because the DisCos were under collecting or under-remitting such that GenCos were getting only about 20 per cent of their invoices from Power adding that Government intervened and created N701 Billion Payment Assurance Guarantee (PAG)  to NBET to ensure that payment to GenCos improved. Payment of invoices, according to Fashola, has now increased from 20 to 80 per cent “in the hope that if we move production, DisCos will collect and remit”. He expressed regrets, however, that his office still receives daily reports by mail, letters and e-mails of exorbitant bills by DisCos to Consumers without meters while the remittance by DisCos to NBET has not increased resulting in NBET  owing the GenCos N325.7 Billion, a debt which he was certain could be settled if NBET could collect what DisCos are currently owing it. Also, in order to assist in the evacuation of 2,000MW, the difference between what the GenCos can produce and the DisCos can distribute, Fashola said the DisCos were asked to submit their transformer and other equipment requirements adding that, as part shareholders, government has committed to invest N76 Billion for the procurement of equipment and installation to help the DisCos evacuate the 2,000 MW to consumers. Other inputs by government, he said, include settling an inherited court case and making available N37 Billion to Meter Asset Providers (MAPs), under the regulations made by NERC to license meter investors, “to help supply meters that the DisCos are under contract to supply but are yet unable to do so”, adding that the gesture was in order to bridge he metering gap and to promote harmonious relationship and reduced friction between the DisCos and their MAPs. Progress, the Minister said, have also been recorded in the sector between 2015 and 2018 including improvement in the generation of power from 4,000 MW (approx) in 2015 to 7,000 MW (approx) in 2018 averaging an increase of 1,000 MW (approx) per annum adding that additional 455 MW (Azura); 215 megawatts (Kaduna), 240 MW (Afam III); 40 MW (Kashimbilla); almost totaling 954 MW would be added this year while 700 MW (Zungeru), 480 MW (Okpai II) about 1,150 MW are projected for 2019, even as the GENCOs are undertaking various repairs, rehabilitation and expansion that would bring on incremental power. “Transmission has also increased from 5,000 MW (Approx) in 2015 to 7,124 MW (Approx) in December 2017 averaging 1,062 MW per annum increase in transmission capacity. TCN currently has about 90 Transmission projects in various stages of construction and many are to be completed this year”, Fashola said adding, “So, we can transport what the GENCOS generate and there is a Transmission Expansion plan 2018 to 2028 which Government is committed to implement”. The Minister said although distribution has increased from 2,690 MW (Approx) in 2015 to 5,222 MW (Approx) in 2018, averaging an increase of 844 MW per annum “because the DISCOS have also done some work”, adding that from 2016 when the DisCos complained about lack of enough power to distribute, the problem today was that the DisCos could not distribute all of the Power that was available, leaving the sector with an unused capacity of 2,000 MW (Approx), with the approximately 1,150 MW projected to come this year and 2019. In the robust question and answer session that followed, Fashola explained that all the solutions being applied to reform the power sector such as the Payment Assurance Guarantee, among others, were contained in the Power Sector Reform Programme (PSRP) which the his Ministry compiled urging stakeholders, including the Media, to read it for understanding. Also present at the event were the Minister of State, Power, Works and Housing Surveyor Suleiman Zarma Hassan, Chairman NERC, Professor James Momoh and his Vice, Engr. Sanusi Garba, Managing Director, Transmission Company of Nigeria, Mr. Usman Gur Mohammed, Managing Director Rural Electrification Agency, Mrs. Damilola Ogunbiyi, other Agency Heads, Directors and Special Advisers .
10 July, 2018
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PUBLIC ANNOUNCEMENT
20 May, 2018

Multinational: Benin, Cote D’ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria And Togo And The Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS)

Study on the Abidjan – Lagos Corridor Highway Development Project

Notice for Expression of Interest

Recruitment Of A Consultant To Conduct A Corridor Economic & Spatial Development Initiative Scoping And Project Packaging Study For The Abidjan-Lagos Highway Corridor Highway Development Program

The ECOWAS Commission has received Grants from the African Development Fund (ADF) and the European Development Fund (through the African Investment Facility –AfIF) to cover the cost of studies on the Abidjan-Lagos Corridor Highway Development Project, and intends to use part of Grant amount to finance service Consultants Contract for Corridor Economic & Spatial Development Initiative (SDI) Scoping and Project Packaging Study for the Abidjan-Lagos Highway Corridor.

The services under this Contract mainly consist of: (i) defining the corridor’s zone of influence to show direct and indirect beneficiaries (populations, other economic activities, etc.) which the corridor affects and vice versa, using the appropriate technical methodology under the SDI concept; (ii) identifying and analyzing the significant developmental aspects of the various zones along the corridor; (iii) identifying a longlist of economic projects (trade, logistics, industry, etc) within the geographical zone of influence of the Corridor, that are worth developing as part of the multinational highway project to result in a holistic economic development corridor, (iii) data gathering, and scoping (shortlisting) of SDI projects; (iv) developing regulatory and institutional framework for the holistic development of the corridor as an economic development corridor; (v) perform economic and financial analysis of selected projects to determine the nature of investments required for further development and (vi) develop an Abidjan-Lagos corridor economic development investment & marketing plan.

Feasibility and Detailed Engineering Studies are to be conducted per the following lots to cover the entire corridor: (i) Lot 1: Abidjan (Cote d’Ivoire)-Takoradi (Ghana), 295.3 km; (ii) Lot 2: Takoradi-Apimanim  (Ghana)-Accra (Ghana)–Akanu/Noepe Border (Ghana), 466 km; and (iii) Lot 3: Akanu (Ghana)-Noepe (Togo)-Lome (Togo)-Agonmey Glozoun (Togo)-Athieme (Benin)-Cotonou (Benin)-Seme-Krake (Benin/Nigeria)-Lagos (Nigeria), 320.06 km.  All distances provided are indicative and could be more depending on the eventual confirmation of alignments by Member States. 

The overall duration of the Feasibility and Detailed Engineering technical studies is estimated at twenty seven (27) months for each lot and the Corridor Economic and Spatial Development Study shall cover the entire corridor for a period of twelve (12) Months with some interim outputs (impacts from shortlisted projects) that could be taken on board by the feasibility and detailed design Consultants.

The ECOWAS Commission invites Consultants (firms with proven experience in spatial development initiatives, economic corridor development, urban and land use planning, transport infrastructure engineering firms for large-scale infrastructure projects) to submit their candidacy for the services described above. Interested, eligible and qualified consultants must produce information on their ability and experience demonstrating that they are qualified for services of similar nature. The shortlisting criteria shall be: (a) general experience in Economic Corridor Development, urban planning and development services (Studies, Technical Assistance, Project Management,) over the last ten (10) years; (b) specific experience in the field of studies of spatial development and establishment of economic zones along multinational highway corridors during the last ten (10) years; (c) Specific experience in cross-border or multinational land-use planning over the past ten (10) years; (d) availability of key personnel (list, qualification, experiences); (e) logistical and equipment; (f) IT Resources and specialized software, etc. (g) capacity to produce reports and all other relevant documents on the study in English and French.

NB: Each reference will be summarized on a project sheet, and will be considered only if the candidate attaches supporting documents indicating the contact information of the contracting authorities so as to facilitate verification of the information provided: Excerpts of contract (inner cover page and page with the signatures) plus Attestation of good performance.

Consultants may form groups to increase their chances of qualification.

The eligibility criteria, the preparation of shortlist, and the selection procedure shall comply with the African Development Bank’s Procurement Framework for operation funded by the Bank Group as of October 2015 available on the Bank’s website: http://www.afdb.org. The selection procedure will be based on Quality Based Selection Method (QBS), and a shortlist of six (6) firms which present the best profiles shall be drawn up after the expression of interest. Also the firms that are part of an international network are to submit one expression of interest.

Interested consultants can obtain further information at the e-mail addresses mentioned below during working hours: 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon (local time) on working days: procurement@ecowas.int with copy to pgueye@ecowas.int; vtulay@ecowas.int; cappiah@ecowas.int ; deklu@ecowas.int ; sbangoura@ecowas.int

Expressions of interest must be delivered in a written form (one (1) signed original plus four (4) copies) in (person, or by registered mail) to the address below, not later than 14th June, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. (GMT+1), Nigerian Time, and must be clearly marked: “Studies on the Abidjan-Lagos Corridor Highway Development Project/Expression of Interest in Consulting Services for Corridor Economic and Spatial Development Initiatives Study”.

For delivery in person or by registered mail to:

Directorate, General Administration, Procurement Division
First (1st) Floor of the ECOWAS Commission Headquarters,
Plot 101, Yakubu Gowon Crescent,
Asokoro District, Abuja,
NIGERIA.

Requests for further information or clarification could be sent by e-mail:
Attention : Commissioner General Administration &Conference
Email : vtulay@ecowas.int

with copies to :

* sbangoura@ecowas.int
* procurement@ecowas.int
* cappiah@ecowas.int
* pgueye@ecowas.int
* deklu@ecowas.int

The working languages shall be English and French. The Expression of Interest will be submitted in English.

OTHER NEWS
31 May, 2018

Abeokuta Substation Gets New 60MVA Transformer To Improve Electricity

The yearning to ensure qualitative and stable power to Nigerians has made the Federal Government to upgrade the 132/33KVA Abeokuta Transmission Substation with the installation of a new 60 Mega Volt Ampere (MVA) capacity transformer to boost electricity supply in Abeokuta and its environs.

Addressing the Minister of State II Power, Works and Housing, Surveyor Suleiman Hassan Zarma, who was on an inspection tour to the substation recently, the Assistant General Manager Transmission, Papalanto Sub – Region of the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), Engr. Adeonipekun Adesina said the transformer upon its complete installation would complement the three existing ones at the station.

According to him, the station has 3 transformers of 30MVA each, making a total of 90MVA. But with the new one, the station will now have a 150MVA wheeling capacity.  “It used to be a 90MVA Substation. But with the introduction of the new transformer, there will be more power to deliver to the masses and there will be steady supply of electricity”, Adeonipekun said.

Adeomipekun disclosed that the transformer when energized, would improve power supply to Abeokuta Township, Imeko, and Lagos Road, part of Sagamu and University of Agriculture, Abeokuta. In his address, the Minister re-affirmed the Federal Government’s commitment to increasing power supply in the country. Saying “the Federal Government is investing in the expansion of transmission capacity through the TCN by building more substations and expanding existing ones”, adding that the transformer which is installed by the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), under the National Integrated Power project (NIPP) of the Federal Government is aimed at driving the industries, boosting the economy, creating employment opportunities to our teaming youth in Abeokuta and the country in general.

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SPEECHES
11 July, 2018

Text Of The Special Herbert Macaulay Memorial Lecture Delivered By The Honourable Minister Of Power, Works & Housing At The University Of Nigeria, Nsukka

I am the most unlikely candidate to deliver a lecture on engineering and its contributions to national development.

I feel truly honored to be invited and I am humbled. As you all know too well, I am a legal practitioner, and went to university with subjects in the liberal arts, likely History, Literature, Economics and Religious Knowledge.

This itself was not a choice. It was, for me, a matter of necessity.  I wanted to be a professional and law was the only profession I could gain admission to study without having to contend with Mathematics.

I just did not like Mathematics and was confounded by figures and formulas in Physics and Chemistry. 

In my third year in secondary school, I was moved from the science classes to the arts and I was happy to see end of Mathematics. Or, so I thought, until Public Service beckoned.

From my days as Governor having to deal with budgets, Mathematics did not leave me as much as I thought we had parted ways.

Roads, Bridges, Waterworks, Housing projects and General Infrastructure had to be built in Lagos State if we were to come anywhere close to fulfilling electoral promises that I made and serving the people in any meaningful way.

Enter drawings, designs, calculations in bills of Engineering measurement, bills of quantities to measure costs and so much more.

Everything I thought I had parted ways with as a former student of the sciences were staring me in the face as a Governor.

I had to understand road designs, piles for bridges, housing designs, bills of quantities, dredging projects, gas pipelines to support our independent power plants, chlorine aid chemicals to treat water, visits had to be made to project sites and everywhere I entered there was an engineer of one type or the other.

TYPES OF ENGINEERING

In preparing this speech my little research further brought to fore the many ways that engineering defines our lives more than we have perhaps acknowledged.

For example, some of the diverse fields of engineering we have not paid enough attention to are:

Metallurgical Engineering which involves the research, control and development of processes used in the extraction and refining of metals.

Biomechanical and Biomedical engineering which combine the discipline of mechanical engineering with human anatomy and physiology. Resultantly, this leads to work in developing prostheses, developing movements for people with spinal injuries and refining equipment used for athletes.

Geomatic engineers collect, display and analyse data about the Earth’s surface and its gravity fields. This is crucial for developing mapping technology, delineating legal boundaries and indeed monitoring environmental changes.

Plastics engineering. At a time where there is a proliferation of plastic waste, this area of engineering can help develop technologies to manipulate and reshape plastics for recycling purposes.

Software engineering. In this age of apps, software engineers are trained in the specification, development, design and maintenance of software systems and products.

Water resource engineering. We cannot take for granted that water will always be an available resource. Indeed, there are already many examples, both at home and abroad, where the search for water has quickly escalated into conflicts. This type of engineering helps in the assessment of pollution sources, the control of flood damage and resolution of conflicts and effective management of water reserves.

As a coastal State, Lagos was threatened by flood, being 2  (TWO) meters below the sea level and again engineers around me, explaining how the drainage hydraulic systems of canals worked to prevent the State from being submerged.

It became very clear to me that engineering defines our civilization and there is no escape from it, in the way that law, orders our civilizations.

From the sub-national activities in Lagos, things have moved on to a National scale, with President Muhammadu Buhari’s decision to merge the Ministries of Power, Works and Housing into one, and my appointment as substantive Minister, with Mustapha Baba Shekuri and Suleiman Hassan Zarma as Ministers of State I and II respectively. 

I stand here today on the shoulders of giants who created this opportunity.

President Muhammadu Buhari who built this platform, and the many engineers at Lagos State level and now in the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing in Abuja, who have been my pillars of support by sharing their knowledge.

As I have said earlier, engineering defines life, and for a nation with a growing population like Nigeria that requires a massive injection of infrastructure, Engineering is going to play a very important role in our journey of development and our quest for prosperity.

One of the things I hope to achieve here is to re-focus the attention of this university and others to the need that Nigeria has today and will have for many decades to come, for well-trained Engineers who will not only build our infrastructure but will maintain them.

Given what President Buhari has committed to deliver, I do not foresee a situation where any Engineer or Technician who is enterprising will not have job to do; and I will explain.

As I said earlier, our population is growing; and the impact on our infrastructure is now manifest and it is affecting our quality of life. 

Whether it is this school, where you will see that lecture rooms are crowded, bed space for students is a challenge, sports facilities probably aging, and water supply a struggle. 

Or at the sea ports and airports that were built decades ago, or road networks that erosion have taken over, or power transformers and distributions lines that now serve multiples of the people they were initially installed for. 

You will see an opportunity for infrastructure upgrade, addition, renewal or reconstruction. Every time you see these challenges, there is inherently an opportunity for an engineer; and this is what I want us to focus on—the opportunities. 

We have done it before. In the 1970s immediately after the unfortunate Civil War, Nigeria embarked on a radical infrastructure renewal, building stadia, roads, bridges, high rise towers and so on, similar to what has unfolded in the United Arab Emirate in the last decade.

In the 1990s, there was a modest effort, which coincidentally was led by President Buhari under the aegis of the Petroleum Trust Fund, which became short-lived. 

Some of the roads that are still motorable in some parts of the country today were beneficiaries of that intervention, and it is no surprise that people in those places still look to President Buhari for hope because they know he has done it before.

Sadly, we missed this opportunity in the period of between 2007-2015 on a national scale when the price of crude oil, our biggest export, started rising until it exceeded to $100 per barrel and stayed there for a few years.

While many oil producing nations like Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Brazil, United Arab Emirates of Dubai and Abu Dhabi chose to invest in life changing infrastructure of hospitals, bridges airports, universities, skyscrapers, the managers of our own economy chose a different infrastructure. 

They called it Stomach Infrastructure.

They shared the money that could have changed our lives.

They imported $5m worth of rice almost on a daily basis and distributed it to the people who could have produced it. 

There is now judicial proceeding seeking to have some people account for how $2.2 Billion was allegedly shared for financing an election.

While the judicial proceedings will, hopefully, answer the question as to what happened, my interest is in the lost opportunity. 

Around the same period and with the same opportunity of oil proceeds, the Burj Khalifa, which is 829 meters tall and has 163 floors making it, the tallest building of all time, opened in Dubai; to announce their emergence on the world stage .

It took less than 5 years to build and it cost $1.5 Bilion, less than what was allegedly diverted for elections here. 

The opportunities that were lost are difficult to fully quantify in terms of material success and pride, employment for engineers, technicians, artisans, suppliers, and so much more. 

This is the lost opportunity that President Buhari is determined to harness through the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan, a document that I enjoin every one of us to read. 

In it, you will see a clear statement of intent, with a clear statement of actions, and you will see what each ministry is supposed to do. 

For the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing, our action points relate to Power sufficiency and infrastructure delivery, especially roads, bridges, public buildings and housing, in order to reflate the economy, create jobs, improve productivity and growth. 

So, when President Buhari talks about change, he wants us to understand that stomach infrastructure was a National Misadventure that must never happen again. 

He wants us to commit to the type of infrastructure that changes lives, and builds real things that will deliver a shared prosperity. 

When President Buhari talks about change, he wants us to remember that while billions of dollars were being mismanaged, the roads on this campus were deteriorating. Enugu-Port-Harcourt road was not motorable.

Enugu- Onitsha road was dilapidated.

Work had stopped on the Second Niger Bridge.

Work had stopped on the Zik Mausoleum, all because we chose stomach infrastructure and neglected to pay contractors and engineers. 

President Buhari wants us to understand that change is not an accidental occurrence; it is a matter of choice. Unlike before, President Buhari’s government has made a different choice.

That choice is to invest our resources in infrastructure; and in 3 years the signs are becoming manifest:-

Some Contractors are now back to university roads.

The first phase of 9 out of 37 Independent Power Projects for Federal Universities has been funded from the budget and the first Green Bonds ever launched in Africa.

Contractors are back to work on Enugu–Port Harcourt and Enugu–Onitsha; the problem of the 9th Mile Road will be finally solved with a new engineering design.

Work has resumed on the 2nd Niger Bridge, and with a Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund, work should not stop again on that project because of funding, until it is completed.

The Contractor is back to site at the site of the Zik Mausoleum, and promises to complete and hand it over before December this year.

There is a housing project being undertaken in 34 states of Nigeria including this State, where no less than one thousand people are currently employed at each site including engineers.

Power projects are being delivered to critical markets under a pilot scheme to support small businesses, using young electrical engineers deploying solar and gas plants in Ariaria Market for 37,000 shops and Sabon Gari Market for 15,000 shops.

Whenever I visited all these sites, the dominant profession was engineering. Men and women involved in design, testing, measurement, mixing of aggregate to cast concrete, Iron rods for reinforcement, installing solar panels, connecting electrical appliances like transformers, circuit breakers, and many more in order to deliver life changing infrastructure.

When we talk about how difficult things became in our country, it is a conversation about the opportunities we probably did not give to our Engineers.

President Buhari is determined to change that.

If you are still looking for evidence of his commitment to change; I will share some more examples with you.

The first is a series of difficult projects that seem to have defied solutions and to which the Buhari Government directed its change agenda.

One of them is the massive commitment to developing a National Standard gauge rail network to ease transportation.

The first of these, the Lagos–Ibadan-Kano line has commenced with thousands of men and women working on the sites.

There is also the Bodo – Bonny highway and bridges to connect Bodo to the Island of Bonny in Rivers state.

You might be interested to learn that this project was conceived in the late 1970s and two different contracts to deliver it were not executed.

The project has now been awarded and the contractor is on site, employing engineers and other professionals to deliver life-changing infrastructure in the Niger Delta.

One of the things that will happen is that the dangerous crossing across the creek and Atlantic Ocean from Bodo to Bonny and back and its consequential cost and time to the people of the area will be replaced by a drive across the bridge over the water bodies. 

Of course, some of you might have heard of the Mambilla Hydro power plant. To put it mildly in scope and cost it is gargantuan.

It will easily contend as the largest single power plant in Africa, with its 3,050 megawatt size and its $5.7 Billion cost.

It will involve building massive dams, casting millions of tons of concrete, deploying millions of tons of cement, iron rods, mobilising equipment, transporting them, housing workers, feeding them and developing an ecosystem of productivity in Taraba State, that will challenge all of our logistic capacities.

It will take at least 5 years to build; during which time $5.7 Billion, about N2.1 Trillion, will be expended. It is an Engineer’s dreams come true.

What is significant about it is that it was conceived since about 1972, and while many talked about it, the Buhari Government choose to act. That is change.

After many years, the Federal Executive Council of Nigeria, the highest Executive decision making body created by our constitution has approved it. The Engineering procurement and construction contract has been signed.

What is left is to raise the funding to finance it.

Instead of bemoaning the lost opportunity of many squandered billions of dollars, this project was one of the top items on President Buhari’s agenda when he visited China in 2016.

The Minister for Finance is leading our negotiation team to raise the finance.

Apart from the power that it will deliver, the construction jobs it will create, the mining employment for rocks, sand, and other building materials, the road network, the resettlement construction, and other benefits, it will unlock the agricultural promise of Taraba and surrounding states in a most defining way for our National prosperity.

But the commitment does not end at project development; it is backed by Executive action such as the President’s Executive Order No 5 that seeks to promote and secure local content by ensuring that the jobs that can be done by Nigerians must be reserved for them.

This must be good and welcome news for Nigerian professionals, especially those involved in Engineering and Construction business.

On our housing sites, there are similar directives that all the materials to used be made in Nigeria, unless they are items that we are unable to produce.

But Mr. President has not stopped there. In order to ensure that yesterday’s lost opportunities are not replicated, he is now deploying some of the recovered proceeds towards rebuilding our infrastructure.

In the Works Sector, he has just approved the release of N120 Billion towards funding 37 roads in the 2018 budget.

This is indisputable evidence of his commitment to hand Nigeria back to the people and make our money work for us.

Ladies and Gentlemen, the list of what is changing in our country for the better is long. The promise of hope and a better tomorrow are bigger than the problem that Nigeria faces today.

What remains is a matter of choice for us to choose what we want.

We will have to choose between real infrastructure and infrastructure of the stomach.

The Faculty of Engineering in the University of Nigeria and other Universities, and the Engineering students have to make, a choice; about which type of infrastructure provides security for their future.

It is, for me, truly commendable for the University of Nigeria to have inaugurated such a prestigious platform as this Herbert Macaulay Memorial Lecture, to propagate the nationalist and developmental ideals of one of the Giants of our country.

What we then do after the lecture becomes more defining than what we say.

The Economic Recovery and Growth Plan and the commitment to infrastructure renewal and development indicate clearly, where this Government’s priorities lie.

In order to make our manpower development and production respond to our National needs, I contend that the University of Nigeria must see the enormous opportunities and need for Engineers if we are to successfully deliver these projects I have listed and many more still to come.

The best way to respond and contribute to national development is to commit to producing high quality Engineering graduates, and stimulate a high Engineering undergraduate intake.

The future for jobs is promising.

Engineers will be needed not just to build Mambilla Power, the Rail projects, the Bridges, the Airports, the Seaports, and the Gas pipelines, the Power Substations and other projects, but more importantly to operate and maintain them in order to keep them running.

It is this handshake, between Government programmes and policies on one hand, and career development and manpower building by the Universities on the other hand that will take us quicker and faster towards the kind of Nigeria, that men like Herbert Macaulay in whose name we gather, dreamt of, lived for, fought for and died for.

For the construction to take place there must be a conducive work environment, where opportunities can birth Jobs, drive productivity and create prosperity; there must be peace.

Peace of a kind that requires little if any of the law enforcement capacity of the state; and a type of peace that is driven by brotherhood and peaceful coexistence.

All of us must seek that kind of peace in our enlightened common interest.

I seriously think that the best that security agents can do is to prevent conflict from being violent, to enforce the law and impose order.

It us, you and I, who hold the keys to peace

I thank Professor Benjamin C Ozumba, the Vice-Chancellor, the University of Nigeria, the faculty Board of Engineering for inviting me, and I thank you for listening.

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

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Photo News
10 July, 2018

FASHOLA BRIEFS THE PRESS ON THE STATE OF PLAY IN THE POWER SECTOR NEXT STEPS AND POLICY DIRECTIONS

Hon Minister of Power Works Housing Mr Babatunde FasholaSAN middle Minister of State Surv Suleiman Zarma Hassan right and Permanent Secretary Power Engr Louis Edozien left during the HonMinisters Press Briefing onthe State of Play in the Power Sector Next Stepsand Policy Directions at the Ministry of PowerWorks Housing Headquarters Mabushi Abuja on Monday 9th July 2018

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Power News
Photo News
14 July, 2018

7TH NATIONAL COUNCIL ON LANDS HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT HELD AT GOMBE STATE

Alh Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo Governor of Gombe State Center Minister of Power Works and Housing HM Babatunde Fashola SAN right and the Deputy Gvernor Gombe State Hon Charles Iliya

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4Th National Council On Power (Nacopp)
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