20,000 Aba Landlords Mobilise Against TCN Over Blackout

Aba Power Crisis: 20,000 Landlords Mobilise Against TCN Over Blackout

1 year ago
2 mins read

No fewer than 20,000 members of the Aba Landlords Protection and Development Association (ALPDA) have resolved to mobilise at the Alaoji power plant in Abia State and occupy it if, within the next 24 hours, the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) fails to rescind its order which has since last Friday thrown the state into darkness over N896 million owed by Aba Power.

Speaking at a press conference on Friday in its office in Aba, the ALPDA President-General, Chief Alphonsus Udeigbo, together with executive members of the association, said the disconnection of Aba Power from the sole transmission network violated the Electricity Industry Market Rules (EIMR) of 2010 on two grounds.

Chief Udeigbo observed that the TCN wrote a letter to Aba Power on April 19, 2023, asking it to pay its debt within one month and on the same date directed the market operator, a unit in the transmission company, to remove Aba Power completely within a few hours.

READ ALSO: Electricity Consumers Accuse TCN Of ‘Hidden Agenda’ Against Aba Power

“This amounts to a profound and deliberate contradiction in a very sensitive sector”, declared the Udeigbo.

“It is a flagrant violation of market rules.”

The second breach of the market rules in the power sector, according to Chief Udeigbo, is that Aba Power was not notified of the TCN’s order to the market operator to disconnect it from the nation’s sole transmission network.

“Both the market rules and natural justice demand the other party must be put on notice,” he stated.

At the news conference, Udeigbo read out a letter written to the Market Operator, Dr Edmund Aje, signed by the ALPDA Board of Trustees chairman, Chief Leo Ike Okoye, and the BOT secretary, Sir B. Okoro, as well as the ALPDA deputy president, Engr Leo Onyemesiri, the secretary, Comrade Benson Imo, and the legal adviser, Barrister Ejike Obi.

The letter reads: “We, on behalf of ourselves and on behalf of electricity consumers within Aba and environs, hereby demand you lift the said Disconnection Notice MO-DO/TCN/002/2023 within 24 hours from the date of the receipt of this demand letter having failed to comply with the market rules as well as the content of own Suspension Notice.

“Take note that in the event of your refusal to lift the order within the stipulated period, we, the electricity consumers who are now being made to suffer the consequences of your action by throwing us into darkness for over a week now, shall have no option to embark on a peaceful protest to your office at Alaoji Aba.”

If the Alaoji power plant is shut down it will affect power supply to not just the Southeast but also the South-south, up to Edo State, according to Cliff Eneh, an energy consultant and a former senior engineer with both the Power Holding Company in Lagos and the Texas Power and Light Company in the United States.

“The TCN, from the evidence before me, has acted unprofessionally and arbitrarily against Aba Power”, Engineer Eneh stated.

“It needs to ensure that the matter doesn’t escalate, otherwise heads will roll there.

“Legally speaking, the TCN or any unit of it like the Market Operator, is not licensed to act as a market operator.

“In fact, there are a lot of issues I don’t want to get into right now so that the power sector will not go into a tailspin,” Eneh stated.


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