Electricity distribution companies (DISCos) on Tuesday again accused the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) of inefficiency despite over $1.6 billion federal government-guaranteed and multilateral funding and grants to the company.
The Association of Nigerian Electricity Distributors (ANED), the umbrella body of ten DISCos, except Yola, said TCN’s analogue system has caused over 100 electricity grid collapses since the privatisation of the power sector in 2013. Nine of the collapses occurred in 2019.
Also, the group said the TCN recorded about 5,311 interface disruptions in one DISCo in the first 18 days of this month. It did not name the affected DISCo.
Sunday Oduntan, the executive director, research and advocacy of ANED, in his statement also accused the TCN of falsifying data by the National Control Centre (NCC) which coordinates power allocation under the TCN and to DISCos.
Oduntan said he was responding to a recent report by the TCN accusing the DISCos of misrepresenting crucial power evacuation and distribution data in the industry.
‘DISCos peddling falsehood’
The TCN on September 19 accused the DISCOs of peddling “wholesale falsehood by deliberately misinterpreting simple load analysis and twisting the national grid data and statistics.”
The spokesperson of the transmission agency, Ndidi Mbah, said by the act, ANED was attempting to subtly infer there was no load rejection by DISCOs and that TCN was unable to deliver the volume of power demanded daily by each DISCo.
To buttress TCN’s argument, Mrs Mbah referenced two load distribution charts by the Independent System Operator showing the multi-year tariff order (MYTO) allocation, DISCos actual off-take and actual consumption.
MYTO allocation is a percentage of electricity on the grid made available to all the DISCos. DISCos actual off-take is what the DISCo resolves to take out of the MYTO allocation for the next day.
The actual consumption is what the DISCos eventually take from the available MYTO allocation at the TCN/DISCo interface points.
For instance, on August 22 this year, the TCN showed that Kano DISCo opted to take only 310.60 megawatts of electricity against the 359.38MW MYTO allocation by TCN.
Mrs Mbah said although Kano DISCo opted to take 310.60MW, the company was able to actually off-take only 154.17MW, leaving a total of 205.21MW, or 57.10 per cent of its MYTO allocation.
On the same day, she said, Kaduna DISCo had requested for 280MW, against the MYTO allocation of about 359.38MW.
However, only about 166.52MW was actually collected from TCN substations, leaving about 192.86MW, or about 53.66 per cent of MYTO allocation unutilised.
TCN’s conflicting load figures
In his reaction on Tuesday, ANED’s executive director said he owed the ten DISCos that have so far invested about $1.4 billion in the networks an obligation to clarify that they did not reject the allocated energy load.
He said contrary to the TCN’s data of September 20, which showed that 19,173 MW of energy was delivered to DISCos between August 22 and 24, the NCC data showed only 13,963MW was actually received, a 5,208MW variance within the same company.
“It raises questions as to the veracity and accuracy of TCN’s response, in terms of the energy delivered to the DISCos. How could TCN’s supposed sent-out or delivered energy exceed that recorded by its control centre, the singular source for such information,” ANED said.
While urging TCN to focus on improving its network, ANED said except for February 1, 2016, when 4,557MW was wheeled, TCN has never wheeled sufficient energy to meet the DISCo’s energy off-take assumptions specified under the MYTO 2015.
Oduntan said despite TCN’s claim of a Transmission Rehabilitation Expansion Programme (TREP) it is implementing with the $1.6billion funding “the reality is otherwise.”
“The TCN has recorded over 100 partial and total system collapse since the privatisation programme began, nine of which occurred this year.
“Besides, there were multiple transmission interface deficiencies with 5,311 TCN interface interruptions in one DisCo franchise area, between September 1 and 18, 2019,” he said.