Fact check: Has Nigeria commissioned Zungeru Hydropower Phase I?
Claim: It was claimed that the federal government had commissioned the first of four units of the 700 MW Zungeru hydropower plant.
Many people doubt the credibility of information when the President Buhari’s Personal Assistant on Digital/New Media, Bashir Ahmad posted on his facebook wallthat the federal government had commissioned the first phase of the Zungeru hydroelectric power plant in Niger State on March 28, 2022.
This is not surprising as the presidential aide was the same person who previously claimed in 2021 that the Mambila hydroelectric plant had been completed by the government and was fully operational. However, the claim later turned out to be a blatant lie.
Ahmad wrote on Wednesday March 13, 2022 on his Facebook wall saying; “On March 28, 2022, the first of four units of the 700MW Zungeru Hydropower Station, Nigeria’s newest power station (90% complete) and the largest in the country, was commissioned. Officially, it started generating electricity.
About Zungeru Hydropower Station
The Zungeru hydropower project was awarded by the administration led by ex-president Goodluck Jonathan in 2013 for the sum of 1.3 billion dollars. The plant is expected to provide an electricity capacity of 700 MW when fully completed. Zungeru will be Nigeria’s second largest hydropower project after Kainji Hydroelectric Power Station which provides 760 MW of electricity which was commissioned on April 13, 1985.
The Chinese company in charge of setting up the hydroelectric project says that its plant will be commissioned in four phases in 2022, with each phase producing 175 MW of electricity.
The Zungeru Dam, where the power station is being built, is connected across the Kaduna River in northwestern Nigeria near a town called Zungeru. Initially, the project was to be fully delivered within 60 months. However, several accusations have been leveled against the project, thus slowing it down. When ready, it will generate 700 megawatts of electricity. As a result, to access electricity will be accessible to a greater number of residents in the region.
Sinohydro The company is building the Zungeru Dam and Hydroelectric Power Station in consortium with fellow China National Electric Engineering Company (CNEEC). The two companies built a roller-compacted concrete dam on the Kaduna River, a tributary of the Niger River. The dam has a depth of 101 m (331 feet) and a length of 233 m (764 feet)forming a tank capable of storing 10.4 billion m3 of water. The plant’s four turbines will feed 2.64 billion kWh per year into Nigeria’s national power grid.
But construction of the facility displaced 500 people, whom the federal government promised to relocate to New Gungu, Wushishi. The Federal Government of Nigeria financed 75% of the works through a preferential loan from the Exim Bank of China. The new facility is expected to meet 10% of Nigeria’s electricity needs according to the federal government.
Likewise, the official Facebook page of the Minister of Electricity, engineer Abubakar D. Aliyu, FNSE confirmed the development in which some photos and videos of the inauguration ceremony have been published.
The commissioning was carried out by the Minister of State for Energy, Goddy Jedy-Agba, alongside the Governor of Niger State, Abubakar Sani Bello, who was represented by his deputy Alhaji Ahmad Ketso in the region. of Wushishi from Niger State.
He said the project, when completed this year, would produce 2,630 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of electricity annually.
“It is my pleasure to address all of you for the achievement of this milestone in the generation of clean renewable electricity from the 700 MW Zungeru Hydropower Project for the benefit of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“The implementation of the Zungeru hydroelectric project which started in 2013 and the pre-commissioning exercise of the first turbo-generator set that we are witnessing today mark a step in strengthening the objective of economic stimulation of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration,” he said.
The minister said that at the height of the construction phase, more than 5,000 workers were hired with a preference for locally sourced materials.
He said that when fully operational, more than 300 key and highly skilled professionals would be fully engaged to manage the facility.
Agba said that economic benefits project for the population of Niger State to include: water supply systems for community use, dry season agriculture and irrigation, flood control mechanism, aquatourism opportunities, l improving the economic and social well-being of the host community, said Agba. of President Muhammadu Buhari, is committed to working with all strategic partners to achieve the fundamental objectives of the various energy reform policies and will continue to promote and lead such initiatives.
Based on the available evidence, It is true that Nigeria has commissioned the first 175 MW unit of the 700 MW Zungeru hydropower project located on the Kaduna River in Niger State. The other three units are expected to enter production by 2022.
Yauri FGC students, Kebbi
310 days 6 hours 56 minutes 7 seconds,
Baptist School Students, Kaduna
292 days 8 hours 37 minutes 32 seconds
Students from Tegina Islamiya, Niger (released)
Spent 88 days from May 30, 2021 to Aug 26, 2021
Report by: PRNigeria.com