Mr Kola Balogun, Chairman, MOMAS Electricity Meter Manufacturing Company (MEMMCOL) has urged the Federal Government to sanction Meter Assets Providers (MAPs) that contravene the Power Sector Local Content Act.
Balogun made the call in Lagos, while reacting to the massive importation of electrical equipment into the country; which contravenes the Executive Order 5.
President Muhammadu Buhari had on Feb. 15, 2018, signed the Executive Order 5 into law, to improve local content in public procurement with science, engineering and technology components.
The move, according to the president, is a step toward achieving the nation’s developmental goal of improving all sectors of the economy.
Balogun said that the importation of the electrical equipment by some of the MAPs was a clear violation of the Local Content Act.
He said that the non-compliance with the law should result to the suspension of projects/contracts, penalty of five per cent of project sum, withdrawal of Ministry of Power’s services, and project cancellation.
Balogun said their licences could also be withdrawn or the companies disqualified from pre-qualification list of contractors.
He said: “I am of the opinion that meter imported into the country is a total contravention of the Local Content Act.
“The regulation says they must patronise 30 per cent local content, which you do not fulfill and yet they are fulfilling 70 per cent foreign importation of meters.
“It is when the violators of local content Act are punished that they will know the importance of creating the local content in power sector.
“There is need for us to create employment and the opportunities in the power sector can take care of jobless people on the street.”
He said the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), as regulator and custodian of the Local Content Act, should scrutinise the operations of companies in the power sector to ensure their compliance with the Act.
Balogun said: “The Local Content Act was promulgated to enhance local participation in the power sector, but indigenous firms are yet to play significant role in the industry.
“It is aimed at not only protecting the indigenous players in the evolving Nigerian power sector but also to have positive impact on the economy by raising Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and providing employment and business opportunities for Nigerians.”
He maintained that the local meter manufacturers had the production capacity to bridge the wide electricity metering gap in the sector and could also supply standard meters to neighbouring African countries.
Balogun, therefore, appealed to the Distribution Companies and MAPs to boost the power sector by patronising the local meter manufacturers in compliance with Executive Order 5.