The Senior Staff of Electricity and Allied Companies (SSEAC) yesterday condemned the recent alleged disparaging remarks of the Managing Director of Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), Usman Gur Mohammed, saying it was capable of eroding the gains of the privatization of the nation’s power sector. Besides, the union has asked the Federal Government to consider relieving the agency’s boss on account of his incompetence and recklessness. The union’s position which was contained in a petition to the Vice President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, was sequel to Mohammed’s alleged recent remarks in the press that the nation’s power firms are weak and bankrupt.
Comrade Umar Dubagari, General Secretary of the union, in the petition titled,”Growing Anti-Government And Over Reaching Activities of Managing Director of Transmission Company of Nigeria”, maintained that the former knows no limits to his unfortunate appointment because he undermines government institutions and agencies. He said Gur is fostering disharmony in the value chain of Power Sector, adding that he has just set fire in the sector by attacking the GenCos and DisCos, which will be impossible to have cooperation in the sector that is already battling with many problems. He also alleged that the TCN boss has taken up the role of Labor Unions by his arrogant pronouncements just as he has been having running battle with our union for disobedience to rules and interference in the running of our union. “TCN boss also usurps the oversight of the sector from the ministry of power by making general claims and misrepresentations that impact negatively on the sector”, he alleged.
Specifically in the interview under reference, the MD TCN described the nation’s power firms as weak and technically bankrupt. He made several allusions and indictments against government over the Federal Government’s interventions in the power sector after privatization. In particular, he made reference to September, 2014, when the Central Bank of Nigeria introduced a N213bn intervention fund, a loan facility with a 10 years repayment period, to assist the GenCos and DisCos to settle legacy gas debts, execute metering and maintenance program, and finance procurement of transformers and other equipment. He added that the Federal Government in March, 2017, launched the Power Sector Recovery Programme with the major highlight being a CBN-funded payment Assurance Guarantee for two years to the tune of N701bn, expected to cover the shortfalls of the Nigeria Bulk Electricity Trading Plc, for GenCos and gas suppliers for power generated and future power generation, and in isolation, will cover N300bn in existing liabilities.