By Nefishetu Yakubu
The Management of the Benin Electricity Distribution Company (BEDC) says it requires National Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC)’s approval for signing a bilateral agreement with the Edo Government on Ossiomo Power Plant.
The Chief Head of BEDC in the state, Mr Abel Enechaziam, disclosed this in a statement made available to newsmen on Saturday in Benin.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that BEDC’s position, followed the 48-hour ultimatum given to the distribution company by the state government to sign the proposed agreement with it on power line procurement.
Enechaziam said, “as you are aware, we operate in a regulated sector and would require the sign off of the relevant sector regulators such as NERC before executing the proposed agreement.
“The approval sought was in order to ensure that we remain within the permitted regulatory parameters.
“One of the two grey areas in contention in the bilateral agreement on Ossiomo bordered on the need for valuation of the line to be used for power evacuation through open, competitive and transparency tendering process.
“This process will ensure that only prudent costs are passed to the customers.
“The other issue of dispute is that BEDC insisted that it would not allow joint operation and maintenance of the Ossiomo line because you cannot have a distribution within a distribution.
“Another is that a sub-contractor could be appointed by Ossiomo to work under BEDC supervision for accountability and safety sake in its network,” Enechaziam said.
According to him, BEDC is ready to partner Edo government on the Ossiomo power project as evidenced by its constant efforts at ensuring that the NERC clearance letter is properly and safely implemented.
Enechaziam said that the delay in signing the bilateral agreement with the state government on the project was due to Ossiomo’s non agreement with the process for the operations.
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