Electricity Workers Urge FG To Reverse Privatization Of Power


The National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE) has demanded that the privatization of Nigeria’s power sector be completely undone.

In an interview on Thursday in Ibadan, Modupeoluwa Akinola, assistant general secretary for NUEE’s southwest zone, stated this.

Akinola claimed that the opposition to the planned privatization of the Transmission Company of Nigeria was due to the fact that the nation was not prepared for the privatization of the industry.

According to him, the NUEE is demanding full renationalisation of the electricity sector under the democratic leadership of a board that comprises representatives of workers and consumers.

“Our opposition to the privatisation policy was informed by our understanding and conviction that privatisation will always seek to protect and defend the profit interest of the business owners against the general interest of the people for affordable and regular electricity,” he said.

“Let’s crosscheck people that bought power Generation Companies (GenCos) and Distribution Companies (DisCos), are they professionals in the power sector and do they have the financial capabilities needed to run the sector effectively?

“Over N2 trillion of bailout funds that the federal government has given to both the DisCos and GenCos on different occasions since the privatisation is not showing, in terms of improvement in electricity supply and better performance.

“All hopes and expectations that privatisation will add value to the life of the people and bring meaningful impact and improvement to the power sector have been dashed.

“One of the bases of our complaint prior to the eventual privatisation of the power sector in 2013 was that we are not ripe for total power privatisation in Nigeria.”

Akinola asserted that Nigeria might begin partial privatization after the current privatization of the GenCos and DisCos, in which case private owners would be permitted to share with the government.

He also encouraged the federal government to become involved in matters including the welfare of electricity workers, the rights of former employees of the Old Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN), and working conditions in the power industry.

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