Mr. Femi Otedola, the chairman of Geregu Power Plc, has announced a partnership with the Lagos state government and the African Development Bank Group (AfDB) to develop a power transmission project in Nigeria. This announcement was made after a meeting with Lagos state Governor Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu and AfDB President Dr. Akinwunmi Adesina in Lagos.
If the project materializes, it will be the first power transmission project of its kind in Nigeria, as private individuals were previously not allowed to transmit power in the country. This development follows the signing of the Nigeria Electricity Act 2023 by President Bola Tinubu, which grants state governments and private individuals the license to transmit electricity within areas covered by the national grid. The law also decentralizes electricity regulation, allowing state governments to establish their regulatory agencies.
The Lagos state government has expressed its intention to take full advantage of the new electricity act and establish a sustainable electricity market with a robust commercial framework. Public-private partnerships are seen as a crucial mechanism for driving investment in the power sector, according to previous reports.
Power transmission has been a significant challenge in Nigeria, with frequent grid collapses leading to national blackouts. Despite the country’s generation capacity of 22,000 megawatts, the transmission infrastructure can only handle about 4,000 to 6,000 megawatts of electricity. Lagos state, as Nigeria’s largest economy and the fifth-largest in Africa, faces substantial electricity demand, with a demand of 10,000 megawatts in 2020 and a supply of only 1,900 megawatts.
Femi Otedola is a billionaire investor involved in various industries, including oil and gas, power, banking, shipping, and real estate. He serves as the chairman of Geregu Power Plc, which is a major shareholder in First Bank Plc.