NCP okays final payment for PHCN’s successor firms.

THE National Council on Privatisation (NCP) has approved the payment of the remaining 75 per cent of 14 out of the 15 bidders for the acquisition of the 15 Power Holding Company of Nigeria’s (PHCN) successor companies.
Besides, the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) has engaged a management contractor for the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) to place it on the path of global best practices.
BPE approved the payments of the 12 companies that made payments on the due date. They are Amperion Power Co. Limited (Geregu), Transcorp/Woodrock (Ughelli), Integrated Energy Company (Ibadan), NEDC/KEPCO (Ikeja), Vigeo Power Limited (Benin), Aura Energy Limited (Jos), Integrated Energy Company (Yola), Mainstream Energy Limited (Kainji), West Power & Gas (Eko), Kann Consortium (Abuja), 4Power Consortium (Port Harcourt) and Sahelian Power SPV Limited (Kano).
A statement issued by the Head, Public Communication of BPE, Chigbo Anichebe, explained that the council also approved the late payments made by North South Power and Interstate Electric Limited for Shiroro Power Plc and Enugu Distribution Company Plc respectively, subject to the late payment penalty as provided in clause 12.20 on interest for late payment and clauses 5.5, 5.5.1 and 5.5.2 of the SPA.
It, however, referred the case of CMEC/EURAFIC consortium, the preferred bidder for Sapele Generation Company, which had paid $119,887,156 of the $201,000,000 bid consideration to the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation, and Minister of Justice and Legal Committee of the NCP for advice, as a result of the legal issues identified and needed to be resolved.
NCP also directed the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation to ensure that all staff entitlements were fully paid by the week beginning September 23 and ending September 27, 2013.
Council equally approved the protocol for the physical handover of the successor companies to the bidders that had fully paid the remaining 75 per cent for the acquisition cost.
Director-General BPE, Benjamin Ezra Dikki explained that the decision was also predicated on the belief that the management contractor would bring in invaluable experience on the sector development, provide clear targets and incentives, build capacity of TCN staff to prepare them for future roles, post-management contract and completion of the unbundling and independent operation of the system and market operator functions, into an independent system operator, thus allowing the entities to concentrate on their core functions.
He said that the management contract with Manitoba Hydro International, which was in the second year of the contract, had so far delivered 18 milestone reports on different facets of how TCN would be transformed.
The DG disclosed that the total investment expected in the distribution companies when the private investors would finally take over would be $1.8 billion.
He added that the investment would cover among others, metering, new customer connections and network expansion, reduction in number of customer interruptions and health, safety and environmental practices.
On the implications of the NIPP on the power transaction, Dikki said that the transaction had shown that there was a strong demand from private sector to participate in the generation and distribution sectors of the electricity industry.