By SUNDAY ABBA, Abuja
The Minister of Power, Bayo Adelabu, on Thursday took to his X (formerly Twitter) handle to confirm the total collapse of the national power grid which plunged the entire country into darkness beginning from the wee hours of the day.
This is coming days after the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) celebrated 400 days of grid stability.
According to him, fire outbreaks along the Kainji/Jebba 330kV transmission lines caused the damage as it led to sharp drops in frequency from 50.29Hz to 49.67 Hz at 0:35:06Hrs, with Kainji dropping load from 451.45 to zero and Jebba losing 356.63MW at about the same time.
“At 00:35Hrs this morning, Fire outbreak with explosion sound was observed on Kainji/Jebba 330kV line 2 (Cct K2J) blue phase CVT & Blue phase line Isolator of Kainji/Jebba 330kV line1 was observed burning.
“This led to sharp drops in frequency from 50.29Hz to 49.67 Hz at 0:35:06Hrs, with Jebba generation loss of 356.63MW. Kainji started dropping load from 451.45 MW at 00:35:07Hrs to zero.
“At 00:41Hrs frequency dropped further from 49.37 Hz to 48.41Hz then resulted in system collapse of the grid,” he tweeted.
He however said there was no cause for alarm as they were on top of the situation to restore the system and power supply as soon as possible, adding that the fire had been fully arrested.
The Minister, who is said to be in South Korea, explained that the delay in updating the public on the matter was deliberate, so as not to cause panic.
Meanwhile, a statement signed by TCN’s general manager, Public Affairs, Ndidi Mbah, and made available to SUMMIT POST Newpaper thereafter, corroborated the Minister’s position, noting that grid restoration nationwide was in progress and had reached advanced stages with power supply restored in the South West, North Central, South East, and some other parts of North.
“The power supply restoration is sequel to the total grid collapse, which occurred at about 12.35 am, this morning, causing outage nationwide, after over 421 days of consistent grid stability,” it said.
Debunking reports making the round that the grid again experienced total breakdown after the midnight incident, the statement explained that, in trying to restore the system, there was a setback suffered initially leading grid restoration failure which does not amount to grid collapse.
“It would be recalled that the last total system collapse recorded was on 20th July 2022, and since then, to the 13th of September, 2023 (421 days). Prior to this, the system had been stable in spite of the challenges posed by zero spinning reserve and lack of System Control and lack of adequate Data Acquisition (SCADA) essential to a strong and stable grid, among others,” TCN said, noting that the current incident is being investigated.