The inadequate provision of electricity is causing distress in the housing sector, with dissatisfaction mounting over the subpar performance of Electricity Distribution Companies (DisCos). In response to the lack of dividends from the DisCos, despite the government holding a 40 percent stake and injecting at least $1.25 billion in the past 12 years, the government is revising its funding strategy for the 11 firms.
Despite numerous financial interventions, electricity supply remains erratic, prompting the government to strip the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) of its control over its shares in the DisCos. The Ministry of Finance Incorporated (MOFI), mandated by law to manage government assets, will now oversee the government’s 40 percent stake.
A Ministry of Finance official expressed the government’s deep frustration, emphasizing the absence of dividends since 2012 despite substantial financial support. The official cautioned that this financial shortfall could jeopardize the ambitious $1 trillion economy projection outlined by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
Highlighting the necessity of a reliable power supply for economic growth, the official stated, “You cannot double your rate of growth of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and increase your base to $1 trillion without power.”
To enhance accountability and spur reform in the power sector, the government has removed the BPE’s authority over government shares in the DisCos. The move aims to identify and address the fundamental issues plaguing the sector.
While a House of Representatives investigation is underway into the $1.25 billion government fund in the DisCos with no dividends, the government remains committed to its partnership with the DisCos. The focus is on identifying and resolving issues to positively transform the situation rather than withdrawing from the partnership.
Despite numerous interventions, including the N300 billion Power and Airlines intervention and the National Mass Metering Programme (NMMP), challenges persist in achieving a reliable and consistent power supply. The government’s multifaceted approach underscores its commitment to revitalizing the power sector and ensuring access to dependable electricity for Nigerians.