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Lagos Assembly holds hearing on state electricity bill

• Plans to establish power agency, electrification fund to improve supply
• Says bill to promote off-grid solutions, clean energy adoption
• Participants raise concerns over implementation, risk of increased tariff

Lagos State House of Assembly, yesterday, held a public hearing on the proposed State Electricity Bill 2024, which aims to repeal the existing Lagos Electric Power Sector Reform Law 2018.

The proposed bill, which aims to address the challenges, improve energy sustainability and foster economic growth, has 21 parts and 143 clauses to revolutionise power generation, distribution, and consumption within the state, as well as ensuring reliable and universal access to electricity for all residents of Lagos State.

Chairman, House Committee on Energy and Mineral Resources, Sabur Oluwa, said the bill seeks to provide for the creation and administration of the Lagos electricity market.

He added that the bill would create a commercial and technical regulatory framework for the electricity market and set up the state electrification fund to ensure reliable electricity supply to unserved and underserved areas in the state.

He emphasised that the Electricity Act of 2023, which mandates states to regulate electricity within their jurisdictions, prompted the bill.

Oluwa noted that prior to the 1999 Constitution, which had placed electricity on Concurrent List, the bill proposes to establish the Lagos State Electricity Regulation Authority that will oversee the electricity market in the state, ensuring efficient and sustainable power.

Speaker of the Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa, represented by the Deputy Speaker, Mojisola Lasbat Meranda, said that the bill, currently before the House, is the confirmation of the state government’s zeal to ensure regular and uninterrupted power supply to residents.

According to him, the bill is timely as electrification is crucial for a viable economy and well-being of the people.

He added that the state government would establish an electricity agency and fund, tasked with ensuring adequate access to electricity through professional standards and modern technology in its delivery.

He emphasised that the bill aligns with the Assembly’s commitment to improving the electricity situation in the state.

In his contributions, Majority Leader of the House, Noheem Adams, stated that the bill aims to replace an earlier one submitted to the Assembly, noting that the new bill focused on addressing the challenges hindering electricity generation in the state.

Meanwhile, stakeholders at the hearing expressed mixed support and concerns as most industry experts and business leaders endorsed the bill, citing its potential to attract investment, create jobs, and improve power reliability.

They commended the focus on renewable energy and sustainability.

However, some participants raised concerns about the implementation of the bill, particularly the risk of increased electricity tariff and the potential challenges in regulatory oversight, urging the government to ensure that the bill is well implemented.

Authors

  • Shakirah Adunola

  • Waliat Musa

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