The Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, recently announced that President Goodluck Jonathan had approved funds for the procurement of one million electricity meters, which would be given to Nigerians to cushion the effects of inadequate metering in the power sector.
The Federal Government has stated that the one million meters it proposed to supply to Nigerians as part of the efforts of government to bridge the wide metering gap in the power sector would be procured from the local manufacturers of electricity meters.
Speaking further on the issue after a recent inspection visit to Momas Electricity Meters Manufacturing Company Limited in Ogun State, the Minister of State for Power, Hon. Mohammed Wakil told newsmen that all the one million meters would be sourced locally.
Wakil said the plan was part of the deliberate efforts of government to encourage the local manufacturers of meters in the country.
He said though the power sector had been transformed and privatized, the government still has a very crucial role to play to ensure that Nigerians got what they wanted.
“Let me state categorically that we are going to procure the one million meters from local manufacturers of meters and that is why I am here. Because of the promise by the government, we are here to see the local manufacturers, to see their capacity and with what I have seen, I don’t think that we have any problem”, the minister said.
Wakil said though the power sector had been handed over to private investors, the government would continue to act as a shock absorber to ensure that the aspirations of Nigerians were met.
According to him, there are two or three local companies that manufacture meters in Nigeria, adding that these companies have the capacity to supply the one million meters.
“We are going to encourage them by ensuring that local companies are patronized. So, as a government, we have a role to play. The fact that we have privatized the power sector does not mean that we don’t have a role to play. There is a regulatory mechanism to ensure government’s participation so as to encourage local companies”, he added.
Wakil also stated that the government would encourage the distribution companies to patronise the local manufacturers of meters.
“Let me say without mincing words that as a Nigerian, I am proud of what I have seen. This is a world-class manufacturing company. I am highly impressed with the technology here”, the minister said.
Speaking earlier when the minister was inspecting the facilities in his company, the Chairman of Momas Meter Manufacturing Company Limited, Mr. Kola Balogun, stated that the company is one of its kinds in sub-Saharan Africa.
According to him, the company has a capacity to produce 100,000 meters monthly.