The Group Executive Director, Gas and Power of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr David Ige, on Thursday, assured Nigerians of significant improvement in the supply of gas to power plants across the country in less than one year.
Speaking with journalists shortly after an inspection visit to the Escravos to Lagos gas pipeline project at Chanomi creeks in Warri South- West Local Government Area of Delta State, being undertaken by Fenog Nigeria Limited, an indigenous company, he said gas supply would improve in the next 46 weeks.
"We have done a lot in laying of new gas pipeline. Just like the one we have just inspected, I have absolute confidence that the contractor will complete it on time. The combination of what we are doing on the supply side is what we are doing on the demand side.
"We believe that we will significantly improve the supply of gas to the power plants over the next 48 weeks. We are doing a whole lot of work already. We are working on the Utorogun gas plant. We are working on Ughelli gas plant to increase capacity. We are expanding Utorogun plant by the end of this year from 320 million cubic to 510 capacities," he said.
Dr Ige disclosed that the new power plants at Olorunsogo in Ogun State could not be put into effective use for now because the existing pipeline was very small with full capacity but assured that Nigerians would in the next six weeks notice significant stabilization of gas supply to power the plants.
"In the short time, over the next six weeks, we expect that the Nigerian people will begin to see significant stabilization of supply to the power plants and, of course, we would not stop there. As we go towards the end of the year, new additions will come and we hope the situation will be different from now," he added.
The NNPC executive director commended Fenog Nigeria Limited handling the project for massive investment on equipment to execute the project, noting that the indigenous company is moving the local content agenda of President Goodluck Jonathan on capacity building.
"As you can see that the work is being delivered 100 per cent by an indigenous company, Fenog Nigeria Limited. The company is doing very well and we will continue to encourage the management and staff of the company as well as other indigenous companies," he said.
The Executive Director, Fenog Nigeria Limited, Mr. Mathew Tonlagha, said the company invested massively in acquiring latest equipments in the world because of its believe in the local content agenda of the Federal Government.
He recalled that not quite long, the executive director of the Nigerian Local Content, Mr. Ernest Nwakpa, commissioned multimillion dollar HDD equipment which was deployed for the execution of the Escravos to Lagos gas pipeline laying project.
Mr. Tonlagha assured that the project would be delivered on time to meet the expectations of Nigerians and also to prove to the world that "we can handle some of these projects ourselves."