36 state governors reject sale of 10 power plants, take FG to court

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The 36 state governors under the aegis of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) rejected the sale of some power plants in the country as they went to court to stop the privatization of 10 federal power plants that government.

The NGF said its lawyers have taken steps to prevent the federal government from selling these 10 power plants, which are under the National Integrated Power Projects (NIPPs).

The Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC), owned by the federal, state, and local government councils, is a power generation and distribution company that oversees the implementation of NIPPs.

This disclosure was contained in a communique issued and signed on Wednesday by the NGF chairman, Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State, after the teleconference held by the governors on Tuesday, November 22, 2022.

The plants of contention: Although the NIPPs in contention were not listed by the governors, the 10 power plants currently undergoing the privatization process include; Benin Generation Company Limited, Calabar Generation Company Limited, Egbema Generation Company Limited, Gbarain Generation Company Limited and Geregu Generation Company Limited.

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Some include; Ogorode Generation Company Limited, Olorunsogo Generation Company Limited, Omoku Generation Company Limited, Omotosho Generation Company Limited and Alaoji Generation Company Limited.

The Court restrained all parties: The communique from the NGF partly read:

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  • “The Forum, following its advocacy that the proposed privatization of 10 National Integrated Power Projects (NIPPs) by the Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) should be stopped, has directed its lawyers to approach the Federal High Court which, currently -issuance of a court order restraining all parties in the case from taking any step or action that will create or give the result of the motion on notice seeking for interlocutory injunction that is nugatory.
  • “The effect of the court’s order is that the respondents cannot proceed with the proposed sale of power plants belonging to the Niger Delta Power Holding Company Limited (NDPHCL) pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice for interlocutory injunction.”

For the ketchup: Recall that in April 2021, the National Council on Privatization (NCP) approved the adoption of a fast-track strategy for the privatization of 5 power plants namely Geregu, Omotosho, Ihovbor, Olorunsogo, and Calabar power plants.

  • Despite opposition to the proposed privatization of NIPP in the House of Representatives, the FG, through the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) has begun due diligence assessment of 16 pre-qualified investors who have been shortlisted for the acquisition of the plants. .
  • Lawmakers passed a resolution ordering the BPE to stop selling these power plants.

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