A Fellow, Nigerian Society of Engineers, Mr Abiodun Oyedepo, has urged the government to employ multiple energy sources, including renewable energy, to address the challenges confronting power sector.
Oyedepo stated this at the investiture of Mr Olayiwola Oyelade as the fourth Chairman of Nigeria Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (NIEEE), in Ibadan on Saturday.
He said: “I personally don’t subscribe to the issue of re-privatising the power industry, as some people are suggesting withdrawal of licenses of electricity distribution companies (Discos) and re-privatising them.
“The discos also have some challenges and part of them is the fact that they borrowed money which they have to pay back with interest.
“The exchange rate is also another challenge that the discos are facing, thus necessitating urgent government’s intervention and assistance.”
Oyedepo also called for the liberalisation of gas infrastructure to allow more people to come into the sector, because most of the power plants don’t have enough gas to fire their plants.
According to him, the transmission company also needs overhauling, adding “if we have 30,000 megawatts today, the transmission line cannot carry more than 6,000 megawatts.
“All these challenges should be addressed so as to ensure the socioeconomic wellbeing of the country,” he said.
In his address, the NIEEE National Chairman, Mr Kings Adeyemi, described electrical engineering as a multi-disciplinary profession encompassing varieties of subsidiary fields, all of which were critical to the survival of various sectors.
“This shows that the services of electronic engineers are needed in all sectors of the economy,” Adeyemi said.
The NIEEE Chairman, Ibadan chapter, Mr Olayiwola Oyelade, urged engineers to take their rightful places in policy making for better empowerment and improvement of the standard of living of Nigerians.
“We are determined to ensure that power distribution companies account for energy being consumed, even remotely, to prevent Nigerians from being shortchanged and help improve on service delivery,” Oyelade said.
In his remarks, the Special Guest of Honour at the occasion, Mr Ademola Agoro, enjoined engineers to be solution providers and problem solvers.
“Engineers thrive when there are problems to solve. However, non-engineers are taking advantage of the vast challenges in the power sector and this is not supposed to be so.
“Some of you even give them your licences to register their companies,” Agoro, who is the Managing Director of Protegee Global Services Limited, noted.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the event featured the investiture of Oyelade and the new executives as well as conferment of fellowship of NIEEE on four members.
Awards were also presented to deserving members and others who had contributed to the development of the society. (NAN)