Governor of Bauchi State, Isa Yuguda who made the disclosure in an interview with the THISDAY Board of Editors in Abuja explained that the state’s proximity to the two countries, which is about 400 kilometres made it economically feasible to source for fuel for the plant from the sister countries.
According to the governor, the average distance between Bauchi and Nigeria’s oil bearing Niger Delta region is about 928 kilometres, thus it is easier to source for fuel for the power plant from those nearby countries.
The governor revealed that the construction timeline for the 180MW capacity plant to be built by China Machinery Engineering Corporation (CMEC) at a cost of $260 million and partly sponsored by the China Exim Bank with $170 million, has been reduced to nine months from the initial 18 months.
“I am a beneficiary of the N1.6 billion loan from the Exim Bank of China, and we are setting up a power plant. Recently, I had a delegation of Chinese engineers who constructed Omotosho and they promised that instead of the 18 months they had earlier promised to complete the project, they will complete the 180 megawatts power plant in nine months.
“It is a thermal plant driven by LPFO (Low Pour Fuel Oil) or crude oil, we have a tank farm that will take six months stock of fuel for the plant and another good news for us now is that Niger Republic is pumping oil and most of the oil that is consumed around Katsina, Kano axis is from Niger Republic,” he said.
He also added that a memorandum of understanding (MoU) had been signed with the distribution company within the zone for sale of excess power generated from the plant.
In Chad, ExxonMobil leads a consortium of Chevron and Petronas that has invested about $3.7 billion to develop oil reserves estimated at one billion barrels in southern Chad. Oil production began in 2003 with the completion of a pipeline, which was partly financed by the World Bank to link the southern oilfields to terminals on the Atlantic coast of Cameroon.
Information from ThisDay was used in this report.