The Executive Director, Networks, Niger Delta Power Holding Company, (NDPHC), Engr. Ife Oyedele, has described the agency as the most successful publicly owned organisation in Africa.
Oyedele stated this in Lagos after receiving the University of Lagos Distinguished Alumnus Award.
According to him, the agency is perhaps the most successful publicly owned organiaation in Africa today.
” It owns the largest fleet of power plants, and generation stations in Nigeria and indeed in Africa today.
“Its intervention in the transmission sector is almost 60 percent of the entire sector.
“That is, it built at least 60 percent of the transmission lines and 60 per cent of TCN substations in Nigeria.
“If you talk about the distribution sector, we have done over 310 injection substations in Nigeria. I don’t know any community in Nigeria that has not felt the impact of NDPHC,” he said.
He said the agency has not slowed down at all. “You can imagine that we are able to generate 4,000MW and the transmission lines are not able to take more than 4,000MW.
“So we have to share what we are producing with other generating companies in Nigeria, this is the reason why people think we have slowed down,” he added.
Oyedele said that the money that the agency is making from the sales of this energy is what it is using to do the projects it is doing.
“Remember that we use to have Petroleum Equalization fund which has dried up.”
He said if all the networks the company has built are removed from the power system in the country, Nigeria will be in total darkness.
“So we are very proud of our achievements, what we have done and we believe we can do more and we are doing more,” NDPHC Director emphasised.
Speaking of power sector, Oyedele said that inability of the Nigerian government to do those things that were supposed to have been done to engender seamless power supply over the years has been the major hiccup in the power sector.
He said he is one of those who think the privatization of the power sector, although, well intended was not properly executed.
“Even the government at a time did not follow the template that was then provided by the then Bureau for Public Enterprise BPE and the World Bank.
“If they had followed that model we would not be where we are today.”
The NDPHC top shot said even now he sees a lot of disjoints in the current system being operated and stated that he has written so many books and delivered so many lectures on this.
He said: “The truth of the matter is that what the government is doing now to move the power sector forward is good. The government is making progress, however, we are coming from a long journey. I am sure very soon we would start seeing the results of the efforts of this government in the last two years.”
On how he felt getting the award, he said: “Today is one of the most joyful days in my life. You know when you are recognized not only abroad but also at home, you feel much more fulfilled. Remember that the Bible says a prophet is never without a honuor except in his own country. But in this case, I have honour both at home and abroad; I give glory to God almighty for this.”
He said when he was working as a member of the executive council of the University of Lagos Alumni Association he remembered that he had held different positions in the association. Above all, he offered his resources too for the development of the association and also the development of the university.
He said he was not looking forward to a day like this when he would receive an award for the services he rendered. But having been called and honoured as part of the activities to mark the 60th anniversary of the University of Lagos, is something he was really grateful for.
On the advise he has for the current students of the university, he said: “As a student, you must be determined in your mind to pursue excellence in everything you are doing.”
He said one of the errors young men commit is to think you have to be something before you can be noticed, and I said that is not true. “When I was in secondary school I got the prize for being the best-behaved form 1 student because I was diligent in the duties assigned to me by the school prefects. I also realize that I use to lobby to wash toilets whereas most of my classmates tried to avoid that. I noticed that the prefects were watching what I was doing so they created a price for me.”
“So when you are do anything either as cleaner, driver or any job, do it well. You don’t have to be a governor before people start noticing you or giving you higher responsibility”
He gave the example of Joseph in the Bible. He said his role model in life has always been Joseph who was a very wealthy father or servant in the house of Potiphar or a prisoner and even as a prime minister, his character was the same. He did not lower his gird. He was efficient, honest, loyal and he did not have this grab, grab attitude. As a Prime Minister of Egypt, there was no record that he owed any property
“This is the kind of life and character I would recommend for any young man who wants be great in life.