TCN privatisation faced with uncertainty, yet to gather steam

The plan by the Federal Government to privatise the Transmission Company of Nigeria is faced with uncertainty as there appears to be no road map yet for the transaction, The Punch reports.

Over nine months after the plan to privatise the transmission segment of the power industry was made public by the Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, it was gathered that some government agencies that would be instrumental to fast-tracking the process are yet to be briefed by the Federal Government.

It was further learnt that the National Council on Privatisation was unaware of the plan to turn over the transmission backbone to private sector investors. The failure to carry the NCP along has meant that the transaction advisers for the sale process had not been appointed and as such, could not happen without the council deciding on the sales method.

The NCP is the apex body charged with the responsibility of formulating and approving policies on privatisation and commercialisation of public enterprises.

A spokesperson for the Bureau of Public Enterprises, Mr. Alex Okoh, recently indicated that the current review of the power sector by the Federal Government had slowed down the process of privatising the TCN.

Nebo had in July last year said the Federal Government was considering three options for the privatisation of the TCN, namely; full privatisation, regional privatisation and concession of the TCN to private investors. He however did not give a tentative date when the privatisation process would begin.

There has also been some opposition by the power sector labour unions who have said that they would move against the planned privatisation of the TCN by lobbying members of the National Assembly not to support such a move.

Their opposition to the privatisation of the company lay in the fact that the agreement they reached with the government on the power sector privatisation did not include the TCN. Furthermore, the unions also pointed at the poor state of the privatised power generation and distribution companies as a justification for their opposition to the sale of the transmission company.




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