As part of efforts to support economic development, the Lagos State House of Assembly is set to pass a bill to strengthen electricity generation in the state.
The bill, which went through public hearing yesterday, is titled: “Lagos State Electric Power Sector Reform Bill.”
According to the Chairman of the Adhoc Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, Mr. Folajimi Mohammed, epileptic power supply had caused major setbacks to the nation’s economy.
He stressed that the problem in the energy sector couldn’t be left with the Federal Government alone, hence the need for collaboration in the value chain.
Mohammed hinted that the power project would bring a new way of life to the people, as there would be an uninterrupted power supply.
The Speaker of the House, Mudashiru Obasa, who was represented by the Deputy Speaker, Mr. Wasiu Sanni Eshinlokun, expressed the hope that the project would have multiple effects on the state’s economy.
Also, the Majority Leader of the House, Sanai Agunbiade, stressed that stable power supply is critical to the development and growth of the country.
Stakeholders at the public hearing described the bill as a good development that would solve the challenges in steady power supply.
One of the participants, Mr. Aina Adeyemi of Adeyemi Aina & Co, advised that the bill should address the issue of illegal connection and diversion of electricity.
“Even some rich people and remove their air conditioners and other devices from the meter and connect it directly to the pole. This leads to 28 per cent losses for the distribution company.
“The state government should partner meter production companies on the project. There should also be a special court and police for energy offenders, as it is done in Egypt,” he said.
The state Commissioner for Energy and Natural Resources, Wale Oluwo said the bill was to provide a legal framework to make it a law in the state
According to the commissioner: “We used to provide electricity to power government agencies. But now, we want to power private homes and offices. We are planning to generate electricity and pass to Eko and Ikeja distribution companies.
“The Bill has 45 parts, we would ensure that power gets to the people, as we have not had good electricity in the country for 50 years. We will help the DISCOs to provide meter to everybody and stop estimated billing.
Electricity would be on pre-paid basis and people would either pay through recharge card or online. There would be power rangers and mobile courts to deal with offenders with the approval of the state assembly,” he said.