Required: A Roadmap

for the Achievement of a Successful and Sustainable Power Supply in Nigeria



By O. Chima Okereke, PhD

Nigeria & UK




This is a roadmap that presents a path consisting of various power plants, transmission and distribution systems with suggested timelines for their establishment. It may contain fossil fuel powered plants, renewable energy sources for grid and minigrid operations. It should provide a guide to the country to achieve a successful and sustainable power supply.  The timelines could stretch into years and decades. The capacities of the plants, transmission and distribution systems, including the minigrids shall be specified. This, I submit, is what the country needs to enable concerted and directed investments for the establishment of a successful and sustainable power supply over time. It should be developed by a team of independent experts on the power supply industry.

This suggestion was triggered by the contrasting messages received from information on two investigative panels in the UK and Nigeria respectively, set up by the two governments, which were in the news in August 2019.  As one read the two accounts, one could see that the UK panel has been so constituted and briefed to achieve its defined and specified objective. In my assessment, the Nigerian power panel has not been structured or empowered to provide a solution to our perennial and intractable power supply problem.  A short description of the panels will bear out these points.

The UK panel is to investigate the HS2 railway linking about 21 destinations which include Birmingham, Birmingham airport, Carlisle, Chesterfield, Crewe, East Midlands, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Manchester airport, Newcastle, Old Oak Common in London, Oxenholme, Penrith, Preston, Sheffield, Warrington and York on a mixture of existing and new high-speed track. It has been set up by the government and constituted by independent experts. Its terms of reference confirm that it will look at whether and how HS2 should proceed, using all existing evidence on the project to consider:

  • its benefits and impacts
  • affordability and efficiency
  • deliverability and scope
  • its phasing, including its relationship with Northern Powerhouse Rail

The second panel is on power projects set up by the government of President Buhari to probe the $16 billion invested by former governments on the power projects. On 29th August, Nigeria’s Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Nigerian law enforcement agency that investigates financial crimes, arrested four officers of the Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC) on their probe of the $16 billion invested by former governments on the power projects. From this development, it appears that the probe is being conducted by the EFCC [1].

In the absence of any other terms of reference, we would quote the President who reportedly stated: “The previous government mentioned on their own that they spent $16bn on power but you are better witnesses than myself. Where is the power? Where is the money? We will follow them, eventually God willing, we will catch them and get our money back.” [2]

What could be inferred from the quoted statement is that the president and some others expected the $16 billion to be adequate to produce the national grid power supply. The resulting power should so serve the whole nation that everyone will “be witnesses” that the fund has been judiciously and properly invested.

In writing the foregoing statements, this writer has no moral right to question the president’s decision to institute a probe. Given his much-publicised mantra on anticorruption, it is his prerogative to choose what he does. However, if the objective is to alleviate and resolve the nation’s persistent grossly inadequate power problem which seems to defy solutions, we submit that producing a roadmap for achieving a successful and sustainable power supply should be the way forward.



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How to cite this article: Okereke, O.C. (2019). Required: A Roadmap for the Achievement of a Successful and Sustainable Power Supply in Nigeria; PM World Journal, Vol. VIII, Issue IX, October. Available online at https://pmworldlibrary.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/pmwj86-Oct2019-Okereke-roadmap-for-sustainable-power-supply-in-nigeria.pdf



About the Author

Chima Okereke, PhD, PMP

Herefordshire, UK



Dr. O. Chima Okereke, Ph.D., MBA, PMP is the Managing Director and CEO of Total Technology Consultants, Ltd., a project management consulting company working in West Africa and the UK.  He is a visiting professor, an industrial educator, a multidisciplinary project management professional, with over 25 years’ experience in oil and gas, steel and power generation industries. For example, On December 26th 2013, he completed an assignment as a visiting professor in project management; teaching a class of students on Master’s degree in project management in the Far Eastern Federal University, Vladivostok, Russia.  In August and September 2013, he conducted an innovative, and personally developed training programme for seventy six well engineers of Shell Nigeria to enhance the efficiency of their operations using project and operations management processes.

Before embarking on a career in consulting, he worked for thirteen years in industry rising to the position of a chief engineer with specialisation in industrial controls and instrumentation, electronics, electrical engineering and automation. During those 13 years, he worked on every aspect of projects of new industrial plants including design, construction and installation, commissioning, and engineering operation and maintenance in process industries.  Chima sponsored and founded the potential chapter of the Project Management Institute (PMI®) in Port Harcourt, Nigeria, acting as president from 2004 to 2010.

Dr. Okereke has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Lagos, and a PhD and Masters in Business Administration (MBA) degree from the University of Bradford in the UK.  He also has a PMP® certification from the Project Management Institute (PMI®) which he passed at first attempt.  He has been a registered engineer with COREN in Nigeria since 1983.  For many years, Total Technology has been a partner for Oracle Primavera Global Business Unit, a representative in Nigeria of Oracle University for training in Primavera project management courses, and a Gold Level member of Oracle Partner Network (OPN. He is a registered consultant with several UN agencies.  More information can be found at http://www.totaltechnologyconsultants.org/.

Chima is the publisher of Project Management Business Digest, a blog aimed at helping organizations use project management for business success.  Dr. Okereke is also an international editorial advisor for the PM World Journal. He can be contacted at chima.okereke@totaltechnologyconsultants.com   or info@totaltechnologyconsultants.org.

 To view other works by Chima Okereke, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at https://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/dr-o-chima-okereke/