Despite being a major crude oil producer, Nigeria has the lowest electricity consumption per capita at 123.76 per kilowatt hour among the eleven members of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries.
The country’s electricity generation per capita of 0.000021 megawatts is also the lowest among the group’s members, according to statistics obtained from the World Bank.
The World Bank data shows that Nigeria’s electricity consumption per capita or unit of the population is far lower than that of Algeria (809.83kWh), Angola (237.880kWh), Ecuador (1,053.48kWh), Iran (2,653.7kkWh), Kuwait (15,491.43kWh), Libya (3,360.13kwh), Qatar (16,190.73kWh), Saudi Arabia (6,318kWh), the United Arab Emirates (12,814.97kWh) and Venezuela (3,004.08kWh).
Algeria has a per capita electricity generation of 0.000329MW; Angola, 0.000378MW; Ecuador, 0.001217MW; Iran, 0.00081MW; Kuwait, 0.002636MW; Libya, 0.001658MW; Qatar, 0.001106MW; Saudi Arabia, 0.005305MW; UAE, 0.002268MW; and Venezuela, 0.00079MW.
Nigeria, which has the highest population at 167 million people among the OPEC members, generates the lowest volume of electricity at around 3,500MW on the average.
Algeria generates 12,000MW for a population of 36,423,000; Angola, 7,000MW for 18,498,000 people; Ecuador, 18,260MW for 15,007,343 people; Iran, 61,000MW for 75,330,000 people; Kuwait, 9,400MW for 3,566,473; Libya, 9,400MW for 5,670,688; Qatar, 9,000MW for 1,696,563; Saudi Arabia, 30,000MW for 27,136,997; UAE, 18,747MW for 8,264,070; and Venezuela, 23,000MW for 29,105,632 people.
Following the near collapse of the electricity system in the country two weeks ago, our correspondent learnt from a source at the Ministry of Power that electricity generation had dropped by 1,000MW.
The situation, the source had said, was likely to worsen following increasing gas supply challenges.
The Minister of Power, Prof. Bart Nnaji, had also confirmed that electricity generation had, indeed, dropped by 900MW due to gas supply challenges.
“Yes, power generation has dropped by about 900MW because of gas supply challenges. We are having serious gas supply challenges,” the minister said about three weeks ago.
Our correspondent learnt that both the government-owned and privately-owned power stations in the country had been generating between 3,200MW and 3,500MW of electricity in recent times against the over 4,000MW they had earlier reached.
Ministry officials, who asked not to be named, had blamed the situation on shortage of gas and failure of some equipment at the plants.
“Most thermal stations are working below capacity due to low gas supply and faulty generation units,” a source in the industry, who asked not to be named because of the sensitive nature of the subject, had told our correspondent.
The uncertainties in the sector made the Federal Government to recently sack three top officials in the electricity sector in a bid to give fresh impetus to the reforms in the sector.
Those affected were the Managing Director, Transmission Company of Nigeria, Mr. Akinwumi Bada; Market Operator, Mr. Uzoma Achinanya; and Executive Director, Human Resource, Power Holding Company of Nigeria, Mr. Muyiwa Olushoga.
Nnaji, who presided over the meeting where the decision to sack the officials was announced, had reportedly obtained the approval of President Goodluck Jonathan for the sacking ahead of the meeting.
Nnaji had explained that the sacking of the top officials had become necessary in order to achieve adequate and effective electricity supply in the country.
He said, “A few persons are internally trying to tinker with the system. We are dealing with them. We are going to vigorously pursue any hindrance to supply and clean up the system.
“There are some people who do not want progress in the country. We need to manage these issues. We are making adjustments in the management of the 18 successor companies and PHCN.”
“There will be a major adjustment. We have no choice than to do this so that the country can move forward. The quality of management is essential in moving the sector forward. We cannot continue to have swings in power. We want this to change,” he added.