The Federal Government has launched a safety code, the Nigerian Electrical Installations and Construction Guideline Manual (NEICGM) to guide contractors and power sector operators on the installation and construction of electricity infrastructure in the country.
Launching the NEICGM, which was produced by the Nigerian Electricity Management Services Agency (NEMSA) in Abuja, the Minister of State for Power, Mr. Goddy Jeddy-Agba, said “The essential thing for us today is that we are glad to associate with NEMSA for being able to produce a manual that standardises practices in this electricity industry.”
The minister also said across highways people could observe fallen power lines, slanted poles and transformers which were threat to safety.
He further said, “It, therefore, behoves on all of us to obey the law because henceforth, with the help of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), NEMSA will be able to arrest me and you when we break the law. I submit myself to that power.”
The MD of NEMSA, Engr. Peter Ewesor, said the code would address the inadequacy of the standards of electrical construction practices, especially across the power distribution networks.
With the five-volume code, Ewesor said NEMSA inspection engineers and technical officers now had a benchmark to enforce the agency’s mandate to ensure that the 11 Distribution Companies (DisCos) had safe networks.
The minister added that, “It is hoped that the dedicated use and application of the manual, particularly by the DisCos, Rural Electrification Agency (REA), Rural Electrification Boards (REB) and other stakeholders will bring back the required sanity, safety, stability, standardisation and unification to our distribution networks and systems in line with national and international best practices.”
The NEMSA boss, who is also the Chief Electrical Inspector of the Federation (CEIF), decried the deterioration of power installation standards, especially for newly constructed power facilities, vowing that any person found tampering with the critical facilities would be arrested and prosecuted.
He said, “The right Basic Insulation Level (BIL) has eluded us over the years with the consequences of losing our power equipment at will, when compared with the early days in the Nigerian power industry.”