Vandalism of TCN lines: Senate urges FG to restore power to NE


By Haruna Salami

The Senate, at its plenary on Wednesday, bemoaned the lack of electricity in most parts of the North East Nigeria and urged the Federal Government through the Federal Ministry of Power to as a matter of urgency, restore power to the region.

Debating a motion on “Urgent need to address the vandalization of TCN transmission lines in the North-East region of Nigeria” sponsored by Senator Manu Haruna (Taraba Central) said the FG should allocate funds to the TCN) to address the faults along the Jos-Gombe 330KV transmission line and restore power supply to affected areas, especially on all affected towers.

The Senate noted that the vandalization of critical electricity transmission infrastructure posed a significant threat to the economic prosperity, public health, safety, and security of the North-East region of Nigeria.

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While moving the motion Senator Haruna said recent incidents of vandalization along the Jos-Gombe 330KV transmission line have resulted in severe disruptions to power supply, affecting millions of residents, hospitals, commercial activities communication networks, public safety, and the overall well-being of the people in Plateau, Gombe Adamawa, Taraba, Bauchi, Yobe, and Borno states.

In his contribution, Senator Kaka Lawan (Borno Central) said the region has been neglected for too long, adding that “some parts of the North East had no light in the last two years”.

Senator Shaibu Lau (Taraba (Taraba North), still talking about the “neglect of the region for too long” said though the region has the Mambila power project, in reality there is nothing like Mambila power project today.

According to Lau, the lack of power in the region “poverty is endemic as insurgency has disrupted our lives”.

In his contribution to the motion, former Senate President Ahmad Ibrahim Lawan (Yobe North), lamented the under development of the North East zone.

According to him, the underdevelopment of the zone was reported in the United Nations Report in the 90s, classifying the zone as the poorest out of the 6 zones in terms of economic and infrastructural development, adding that asking for revival of electricity infrastructure was the smallest compared to what other zones are enjoying.

Senator Ahmed Wadada representing Nasarawa West Senatorial District sympathized with the Senators and constituents that make up the entire North East over electricity blackout, insisting that economic activities have moved from the analog to digital era, such that without electricity, no one can virtually do anything to eke out a living.

He said: “I sympathise with the people of North East who have been without light for over a month due to total blackout. Without electricity you can’t achieve virtually anything.

“Without natives charging their phones, how do you communicate, do digital banking”.

Wadada urged Senator Godswill Akpabio to change the narrative, given that the present administration has the political wherewithal to ensure the workability of the power sector.

After contributions by other lawmakers, prayers, “urging the FG to expedite the construction of the Makurdi-Jalingo 330KVA transmission line”, and “that the FG should implement the recommendations in Sections 209, 210, 211, 212, and 213 of the Electricity Act, 2023 was sustained after the question was put to vote by the Senate President, Godswill Akpabio.

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