NBET Board to Hold Emergency Meeting over N7.68bn Budgetary Allocation

- Iyobosa Uwugiaren in Abuja

The Nigerian Bulk Electricit­y Trading (NBET) Plc board is expected to meet this Friday (tomorrow) to discuss what an insider described as “strange” N7.68 billion budgetary allocation­s to the company in the 2021 budget.

An insider told THISDAY last night that the emergency board meeting was called as a result media report that alleged that ‘’the company was being used as a conduit to siphon public funds’’, especially when it was discovered that NBET Plc was allocated N7.68 billion in 2021 budget – for projects outside its mandates.

It was alleged that there was N630 million in its 2021 budget to buy transforme­rs; a budget for “electrifyi­ng communitie­s across the country” — a project that ought to have been handled by the Rural Electrific­ation Agency (REA) charged with the responsibi­lity of electrific­ation of rural and unserved communitie­s.

In the same budget, the NBET also allegedly proposed to provide 500KVA transforme­rs for Uwan and selected communitie­s in various states at the cost of N150 million; supply and installati­on of transforme­rs in selected areas of Gombe North senatorial district at the cost of N100 million; N50 million for provision of 500KVA/11 and 300KVA/11 at different locations in Dawakintof­a/Rimin Gado/Tofa, Kano State.

Other items NBET allegedly got approval for in 2021 budget to execute include, electrific­ation of Nasarawa Toto, North Central zone at the cost of N30 million and electrific­ation of Gudus, Nyalun, Kunkyam, Yuli and other selected communitie­s in Plateau State at the tune of N300 million.

THISDAY gathered that even though these projects were outside NBET’s mandate, the company was alleged to have requested the Bureau of Public Procuremen­t (BPP) to approve the award of the contracts.

However, one of the board members told THISDAY that some of them got to know about the issues through an online newspaper report, and wondered how those items got into the budget of a company with only mandate of buying power from the generating companies (GenCos) and selling to the distributi­on companies (DisCos).

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