Northern Nigerian Breaking News

2023: House of Reps investigates BPE over Geregu, Afam Plants, others

The House of Representatives has mandated its committee on privatization and commercialization to investigate the activities of the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) from 2019 to May 2023 and report back within four weeks for further legislative action.

This followed the adoption of a motion moved by Hassan Shehu Hussain (NNPP, Kano) at plenary on Tuesday.

Presenting the motion, Hussain noted that about 80 public enterprises were privatized through various modes, including core investors, concessions, assets sales, and Initial Public Offers (IPOs) since the Federal Government of Nigeria commenced the privatization and commercialization of public enterprises in 2000.

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He said that during the period under review, BPE in 2019 privatized 29 percent of residues of the federal government’s shares in the Geregu Power Plant to the core investors to upgrade it to a combined cycle for a total sum of N13,134,375,000.

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He said, “BPE without the investors fulfilling their obligations to upgrade the plant to a combined cycle sold an additional 20 percent of the balance of shares meant for IPO to the Nigerian public on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) to the same investor in 2021.

“The Geregu Power Plant may never be upgraded to a combined cycle by the investors since BPE has removed the public enterprises from post-privatization monitoring.

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“The balance of N78bn between Afam Power and Afam Three Fast Power remains outstanding though, the parties signed the Share Sale Purchase Agreement in 2020 and only 25 percent of the purchase consideration was paid and a 100 percent handover to investors on the condition that the balance will be paid upon commissioning of the Afam Three Fast Power which was equally done by former Vice President, Professor Yomi Osinbanjo before leaving office.”

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The lawmaker lamented that the Federal Ministry of Justice recently declined the signing of the Zungeru Power Plant Concession Agreement, which he said would have generated $350m in concession fees on the ground that there was no express approval by the Federal Executive Council (FEC).

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