The Presidency has explained that Nigeria sold electricity to neighbouring countries to prevent them from damming River Niger that feeds the nation’s dams.
It was reacting to a national daily report that the countty exported $81.48 billion worth of power on credit to Niger Republic, Togo and Benin Republics amid energy shortages within the country.
In a statement issued by Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, the Presidency explained that only N1.2 trillion ($4 billion) worth of electricity was produced between 2018-2019, reported in the report.
It further explained that power exported to the three neighboring countries is based on Multilateral Energy Sales Agreement between them and Nigeria so that they will not dam the waters feeding the three major hydro power plants in Kainji, Shiroro and Jebba.
The Presidency expressed disappointment with what it tagged “sensationalism that has dominated the thinking and ethos of institutions that citizens look up to with trust, confidence and reliability.”
While noting that the report (not by TBI Africa ) “is to say the least, hyperbolic and terribly misleading,” it added: “Apart from the fact that the figure quoted is far from accurate, out-dated and therefore not reflective of the current reality, the overall cost of power generated and sold by Nigeria in the period covered by report is not anywhere close to what was mentioned by the paper.
“The actual cost of electricity generated within the said timeframe (2018-2019) by all the electricity generation companies in Nigeria was about N1.2 trillion ($4 billion). “Over 90 per cent of the electricity generated was distributed and consumed by consumers across the 11 electricity distribution companies in the country.
“Power exported to Niger, Benin and Togo based on Multilateral Energy Sales Agreement with the Government of Nigeria is on the basis that they would not dam the waters that feed our major power plants in Kainji, Shiroro and Jebba. “As of the last review in 2019, the amount of indebtedness to all three customers stood at $69 million, subsequent upon which several payments were made to NBET. Much of this has been repaid by the debtor nations.
“As of today, Niger owes only USD 16 million and Benin, USD 4 million, adding up to the Naira equivalent of about N1.2 billion.