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700 megawatts Zungeru power plant starts testing

Testing has commenced on the 700 megawatts Zungeru Hydroelectric Power Plant ahead of the evaluation of electricity from the facility to the national grid, the Federal Government announced on Sunday.

According to the Federal Government, the $1.3 billion project, located in Niger State, had been connected to the national grid, contrary to claims that it was not.

Adebayo Adelabu, the Minister of Power, while providing answers to industry questions contained in a document released in Abuja on Sunday by his Special Adviser, Strategic Communication and Media Relations, Bolaji Tunji, explained that the Zungeru Hydroelectric Power Plant is a major infrastructure project with the capacity to generate 700MW, making it the second-largest hydroelectric plant in Nigeria, behind the Kainji Dam.

He further explained that it is located in the Kaduna River, near the town of Zungeru in Niger State, stressing that the plant is to generate 2.64 billion kilowatts-hour of electricity annually, meeting nearly 10 per cent of Nigeria’s domestic energy needs.

“Located in the Kaduna River, near the town of Zungeru in Niger State, the plant is to generate 2.64 billion kilowatts-hour of electricity annually, meeting nearly 10 per cent of Nigeria’s domestic energy needs,” he said.

The Minister stated that its construction partners include the consortium of Chinese firms (Sinohydro Corporation Limited and China National Electric Engineering Company), saying that the plant provides flood control, irrigation water and fish breeding facilities.

The project, according to industry analysts, is expected to be a significant boost to Nigeria’s power generation and contribute to economic development in the region.

Adelabu, while providing answers to enquries, explained that the facility had been completed, pointing out that its concession process had also been completed.

He said that the payments by the concessionaire have been made and the official handing over of the plant has been done to the concessionaire, stressing that it is Mainstream Energy Limited, that are the current operators of Kainji and Jabba hydroelectric power plants.

He said the project is at the stage of technical handing over by the Chinese consultants that built the Zungeru hydroelectric power plant to the concessionaire, saying that there is a one-year defect liability, where the contractors need to be on the project site to ensure that whatever problem occurs within one year is fixed.

The Minister stated that they are seriously working with the concessionaire and the Ministry of Power, together with the Bureau for Public Enterprise to ensure the technical handover of the plant is completed.

He said the testing stage started on Saturday along with power generation and would last about one or two weeks, after which total production will start.

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