Enugu community grounds FG’s multi-billion naira power project

A multi-billion naira 260/133KV completed power sub-station located at the 9th Mile Corner, Udi Local Council, Enugu State, has been grounded and under threat of vandalisation.

This follow a litigation instituted against the contractor handling the project by some members of the community over alleged entitlement disagreement.

It was gathered that the sub-station contract, which was awarded by the Federal Government through the Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC),  to boost supplies around the 9th Mile industrial area and Nsukka, had since been completed and nearing 80 per cent energisation.

But, a suit brought against one of the contractors, Pivot Engineering Company, had kept the project out of use and under the threat of vandals.

According to the General Manager, Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), Enugu Region, Emma Akpa, who took journalists round the facility recently, the aggrieved community members were claiming in their suit that they were short-changed during settlement for passage rites and, therefore, went to court to stop the work.

Akpa disclosed that when the contract was awarded two years ago, the Federal Government engaged two contractors, Pivot contractors, to handle the energisation line, while the NBH contractors were required to build the sub-station.

He however, lamented that since the project stalled early 2023, no fewer than 12 towers had been vandalised at the sub-station, as the suit subsists. 

When our correspondent visited the site, weeds had already taken over the sub-station, as well as the living quarters of officials who could have manned the station.

Akpa lamented that the sub-station could have impacted economic activities in the area had it been functional.

“This station was conceived by TCN to supply the ninth industrial hub. The supply is supposed to come from the New Haven 132 line. It will be a turn-in turn–out to Nsukka with another 260 sub-stations built at Nsukka and turn-in turn-out to Akamgba in Kogi State.

“The sub-stations contracts in 9th Mile and Nsukka, as well as the line from New Haven were awarded. Of course, there were different contractors. The station was awarded to NBH, while the lines were awarded to Pivot Engineering. NBH has completed its job; Pivot has imported all the materials required and they have started working.

“Somewhere along the line, some people gathered and took Pivot to court, claiming that they were not properly treated, and that what was paid to them was not commensurate. So, that case has been lingering since then. Pivot has done about 80 per cent of the job. They have done the structure; they have started stringing from New Haven and stopped somewhere along Nike Lake area in Enugu East Council”, Akpa said.

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