June 11, 2024

Central News

at the center of it

‘Abia is working,’ says Tinubu as he commissions refurbished roads, $800m Geometric power plant in Aba

Side view of the Geometric power plant (), and Sen. Shettima commissioning roads … all in Aba, Monday.

PRESIDENT Bola Tinubu has applauded what he describes as people-oriented leadership of Abia State governor, Alex Otti, saying that Abia State is blessed to have a governor like him.
The president maintains that the governor’s commitment and resilience is the reason Abia today is working.
Tinubu shares his sentiments while commissioning three newly-rehabilitated roads in Aba – Omoba, Queens and Jubile roads – by Gov. Otti and discloses that the presidency is proud of the developmental strides of the governor.
The president later similarly commissioned Geometric power plant, private sector electricity distribution company (Disco).
President Tinubu, represented by Vice President Kashim Shettima asserts that Gov. Otti has brought his experience in the private sector to bear on the administration of Abia State.
“Within the last nine months, people of Abia State have witnessed a change in their fortunes. Abia is working, we are quite proud of the accomplishments of His Excellency Dr. Alex Otti, OFR.”
Gov. Otti spoke earlier, saying that the roads being commissioned are strategic roads and thanked the contractors that handled the projects for working to specifications, including providing drainages on both sides of the roads and delivering them in record time.
“This road is a road that is built to last. When we do this, we want to give the power back to the people. “We want to give access to you.
“We want you to go back to what you do and what you know how to do without any obstruction and that is why we have promised that every part of Aba must be touched.”
Earlier, President Tinubu made history (through VP Shettima) by commissioning Geometric power plant, the first integrated power plant in Nigeria, situated in the Osisioma Industrial Area of Aba.
In preparation for the commissioning of the power plant, Turbine 3 was turned on at 3.39 p.m. on Sunday, February 25, 2024, leading to massive rejoicing by Geometric Power engineers and their KS Energy counterparts.
The 181-megawatt Geometric Power plant was originally scheduled for inauguration on Saturday, February 24, by President Tinubu.
Aba Power Limited Electric, the newest electricity distribution company (DISCO), in Nigeria, will take electricity from the new plant and supply to nine of the 17 local government areas of Abia State, in the Aba industrial cluster.
Described as the biggest investment in the South-East zone of Nigeria, Geometric Power has spent about $800 million on its integrated power project, which includes building of 27-kilometre natural gas pipeline, from Owaza in Ukwa-West LGA, to the Osisioma Industrial Layout in Aba.
“We have, in addition, installed 150,000 kilometres of cables and wires and installed four new power substations, as well as refurbished three others inherited from the defunct Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN”, explains Ben Caven, managing director, Geometric Power Ltd.
Geometric Power Group is founded by Bart Nnaji, a professor and former minister of Power.
Nnaji, embarked on the integrated project after James Wolfensohn, a former World Bank President and then Nigeria’s Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala visted Aba, on March 17, 2004, and assessed that the greatest challenge facing both large- and medium-scale industrialists in Aba, reputed to be the centre of indigenous manufacturing in Nigeria, is epileptic power supply.
Both Wolfensohn and Okonjo-Iweala appealed to Nnaji to assist with a power plant dedicated to Aba, following the 22MW Abuja Emergency Power Plant he led a team of Nigerian engineers to build in Abuja, from 2000 to 2001 that supplies uninterrupted power to critical places, like the Nigerian National Petroleum Company, the Central Bank of Nigeria headquarters, Aso Rock Villa and the entire Central Business District of Abuja.
Patrick Umeh, a former executive with the Los Angeles Water and Light in the United States, who later served as commissioner in-charge of Markets, Market Rates and Competition, at the Nigeria Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), describes the tubular poles mounted by Geometric Power in Aba and the environs, as incomparable in Africa.
“Only in cities like Tokyo and San Francisco in California do you have facilities of this quality and sizes. Much as they are tall, as all of us can see, the tubular poles here are actually about 10 meters deep.
“In other words, in the unlikely event of a natural disaster, like earthquake in Aba or the environs, Aba Power and the Geometric Group will still be able to supply electricity to its customers.”