According to the Ibadan Electricity Distribution Firm (IBEDC), the five-month power outage in Ife North Local Government Council in Osun State was caused by a malfunctioning transformer that would cost the company N90 million to replace.
The IBEDC Osun Regional Head, Akin Ogunleye, claimed on the floor of the Osun State House of Assembly that the distribution company had first attempted to remedy the problem until it learned that the situation was beyond its capability.
IBEDC discovered that N90 million was required to repair the transformer, which the firm lacked, according to Ogunleye.
He explained that due to a lack of funding, the corporation could not accept complete responsibility for restoring power to the impacted communities in the local government at this time.
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When the IBEDC was called about a power outage in the local government, the business went to work on the defective transformer, assuming it was a simple problem, only to discover that the transformer’s coil had been destroyed beyond repair.
“The expense for the transformer repair was between N28 to N35 million,” he said. “Experience has taught us that in such a case, it is best to replace rather than repair,” he said. “A new one would cost around N90 million, which IBDEC cannot afford.”
Timothy Owoeye, the Speaker of the Osun State House of Assembly, has previously stated that the Assembly could not remain mute while the state was plunged into darkness.
While stating that the House will not abdicate its constitutional duty to protect the people’s rights, Owoeye also stated that it was not the responsibility of electricity consumers or the community to purchase, replace, or repair electricity transformers, poles, and related equipment used in electricity supply under the law.
The Speaker gave the IBEDC management until October 26 to come up with a viable solution to the problem.
Recall that the Osun State House of Assembly had on Wednesday October 6, 2021 passed a motion to summon the Managing Director of the Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company (IBDEC), the Nigerian Electricity Regulation Commission (NERC) and the Federal Competition and Consumers Protection Commission (FCCPC).
After four months of eternal darkness due to a total system collapse of the 7.5MVA electricity power substation, people of the communities in the local government protested openly about their predicament.
The motion was moved by Tunde Lekan Olatunji, who represents Ife North State Constituency, and was in response to a power outage in the local government council of Ife North.
Olatunji, the Assembly’s Chief Whip, had moved the resolution at plenary, emphasizing the importance of electricity as a vital public service that every person should have access to.
He also accused IBEDC of inadequate service delivery, claiming that it has disappointed several communities in the local government, forcing them to rely on self-help.
The Chief Whip added that despite the takeover of electricity distribution by private companies, they were only interested in billing and collection of tariff and not the provision or repair of the equipments they need to generate the tariff.