The Federal Government and Transcorp Power Consortium, yesterday, signed a share-sale-and-purchase agreement to add 966 megawatts to the national grid. The deal is on Afam Power Plc and Afam III Fast Power Limited.
The agreement was signed by Director-General, Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), Alex Okoh and Chairman of Transcorp Group, Tony Elumelu, at a brief ceremony in Abuja. The event was witnessed by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, who chairs the National Council on Privatisation (NCP).
The NCP had in 2017, approved privatisation of Afam Power Plant. Following the approval, a competitive bid process, involving 12 investors was held, with Transcorp Power emerging the preferred bidder with a combined offer of N105 billion.
Osinbajo described the event as a milestone in government’s continued effort to reform the power sector.He said the acquisition of Afam assets by Transcorp Power was first of many new investments in the critical value chain of the industry.
His words: “The Buhari administration’s goal is to eliminate the challenges in the power sector by improving liquidity in the market through a host of measures, including the recently-announced national mass metering programme, and the transition to a service-based tariff.
“We need a power sector that can provide quality service to Nigerian consumers and sustain itself. Afam Power Plc and Afam III Fast Power have a combined capacity of almost 1000MW. The current usable and operational capacity of 240 megawatts from Afam III, and about 100 MW from Afam Power speaks of the opportunity that the transfer acquisition can bring.”
The Vice President charged Transcorp Power to take advantage of the acquisition to raise capacity ultilisation to 100 per cent. He said government expects the consortium to bring its experience and expertise in Ughelli Power Plant, which it acquired in 2013, to bear on Afam.
In his remarks, Okoh said Transcorp Power had committed to investing the $350 million in the two assets.He said: “The reform and privatisation programme of this administration is not about simply divesting public enterprises to the private sector. Government, through the BPE, is also concerned about entrusting these assets to credible investors who possess the requisite technical and financial capacity to ensure that they perform optimally and deliver quality services to the Nigerian people.”
Also speaking, Elumelu noted that access to electricity was pivotal to lifting Nigerians out of poverty and creating the needed jobs. He said the latest acquisition was an opportunity for Transcorp Group to contribute to government’s quest at improving lives.