Magboro community on the Lagos/Ibadan Expressway, unexpectedly had electricity restored to the area Monday as “Christmas present’’ after a decade.
Magboro, widely referred to as “Second Lagos’’,including Ibafo and Asese on the axis had been without power supply for many years.
The communities had at various times protested the protracted power outage in their communities.
The Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company, IBEDC, responsible for the power supply to the affected communities, however, blamed the protracted darkness on the contractors engaged by the Federal Government to build its power project.
John Ayodele, the Deputy Managing Director, IBDEC, said that the areas were not totally cut off but had been getting power supply intermittently from Abeokuta.
He blamed the poor power supply on the uncompleted National Independent Power Project, NIPP, in the area.
“The areas are to get supply from Akute through the NIPP but last year when it was scheduled for commissioning, we noticed that the contractors used sub-standard materials.
“We decided that the contractors handling the project should reconstruct or address the defects in the project, but as we speak they have not done anything.
“When the plant was to be connected to distribute power, it could not carry the loads in the areas,” he said.
The company, however, promised to restore power to the affected communities latest by December.
Reprieve came to the way of the communities as the House of Representatives at a plenary on November 18, urged the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing to urgently complete the power project in the area.
The House decried the long neglect by the distribution company handling power in the affected area.
On December 26, Magboro community got what they did not expect as power was restored.
To the surprise of many residents, electricity which was restored at about 10 a.m. was sustained beyond 4 p.m.
A resident, Olayinka Eyiwuawi, who could not hide his feeling, said it was great having power restored to the community.
“Obviously, it is an ecstatic reaction that having stayed in darkness for 15 or more years in an environment, power is restored.
“This is the first day and we cannot really ascertain how effective or good the light will be.
“If it is going to be darkness for longer and light for few hours, definitely it’s going to be a slight improvement.
“My own house has yet to be lit up, but looking at the progress of the work, it will be gradual before they finish the whole area,’’ he said.
Mr. Eyiwuawi urged IBEDC to give some concession to the community over contributions made to augment the speedy completion of the power project.
“I will like to give kudos to all that piled pressure on the company; I also want a relief to the landlords who have contributed to the restoration of light.
“Personally, I paid N80,000 for connection, so, I will expect a lot of reprieve, especially in the usage of the light for a certain period.
“IBDEC has sold pre-paid meter while the power is not available and it looks fraudulent to us,’’ he said.
Another resident, Shefiu Abiodun, said that the power restored to the community was like a dream to him, adding that the community had experienced many failed promises in the past.
“When I saw the light today, I could not believe it because we have had many December promises, but we were caught unawares today with this fulfilment.
“The light is good enough because we have used it to power pumping machines and other electrical appliances. More power to their elbow.
“The protracted darkness has caused many pains to the community as we live on generators.
“If we should calculate the amount expended on fuel, it is enough to put into other things but we are a lot relieved now,” he said.