Electricity: Canadian firm demands N3.72bn to manage transmission company, Wednesday, 04 Apr 2012  


(The Punch) A Canadian firm, Manitoba Hydro International, has demanded the sum of $23.72m (about N3.72bn) from the Federal Government to run the Transmission Company of Nigeria for three years. Manitoba, whose financial bid for the management of TCN, one of the successor companies of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria, was opened on Tuesday, emerged the sole bidder since the second firm, Power Grid of India, failed to meet the technical requirement. The National Council on Privatisation chaired by Vice-President Namadi Sambo, had on March 26, 2012, approved that Manitoba be invited for simultaneous opening of its financial proposal and commencement of contract negotiations as the management contractor for TCN. Speaking at the financial bid opening, the Minister of Power, Prof. Bart Nnaji, asked the Canadian firm to review the management fee downwards.

Consequently, a six-man team was constituted to handle the negotiation with the prospective management contractors. Nnaji said, "They are not going to get rid of TCN workers, but they will bring in a few people to work with the TCN people, and more importantly, they will bring their expertise. "We anticipate that in the next one month, they will start. They will bring in speed, be able to anticipate issues and problems and address them proactively. This is what we don't have in the public service." Also speaking at the ceremony, the Director-General, Bureau of Public Enterprises, Ms. Bolanle Onagoruwa, said the quality and cost-based selection method of the World Bank was used for the transaction. She said, "The technical proposals were evaluated based on the transmission-loss-reduction network improvement and capacity transfer strategy.

"The intent is to have a transmission company that will be capable of containing the anticipated changes in the electricity supply industry and market."  According to her, the management contract is designed to reduce electricity losses during transmission; provide for the achievement of certain predetermined targets that will improve grid security and general performance; and have reward and penalty clauses as incentives for success. It will also provide efficient management of government investments; ensure adequate and equitable generation dispatch, according to a fair merit order based on sound regulatory principles; ensure fair market settlements between electricity traders; and provide for skills and expertise transfer to Nigerians, who will serve in deputy and other positions on the management staff of the management contractor.


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