WAPP Holds 48th Executive Board Meeting in Lome, Togo

As part of the ongoing 15th Session of the West African Power Pool (WAPP) General Assembly for the year, 2020, WAPP has held its 48th WAPP Executive Board Meeting in Lome, Republic of Togo on the 9th of December, 2020, chaired by the new WAPP Chairman and Ag. MD/CEO of TCN, Engr. Sule Ahmed Abdulaziz.

Delivering his welcome address, the WAPP Chairman noted that the power sector, as the engine of every economy, has been significantly impacted by the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic, leading to, in most cases, a reduction in electricity demand, financial stress and other disruptions. He however commended the high level of work accomplished by WAPP inspite of the pandemic.

The pandemic he said, has introduced several challenges for everyone and institutions globally and WAPP is not exempted, as increasing unemployment and poverty has prevented many from paying their electricity bills. Payment delays and sometimes delinquency of utility bills by end-consumers he continued, is having detrimental effect along the electricity supply chain.

WAPP Holds 48th Executive Board Meeting in Lome, Togo
WAPP Holds 48th Executive Board Meeting in Lome, Togo

With the pandemic effect on the supply / demand side of the value chain and the already existing liquidity crises, strategic options he said, must be deployed to assist utilities bearing the brunt of the pandemic’s negative consequences.

He however expressed the confidence that one of the long-term benefits of the ECOWAS Regional Electricity Market and Interconnected Grid that WAPP is working to establish, will enhance the resilience of the electricity supply chain against such ravaging events as the COVID-19 Pandemic, and that WAPP would pursue this rigorously.

Engr Abdulaziz encouraged the sharing of strategies and collaboration among member utilities as well as the need to volunteer solutions that can further enhance WAPP resilience to the pandemic, noting that the realization of the ECOWAS Regional Electricity Market will equally contribute immensely to easing some of these challenges.

Giving the activity report of WAPP for the period January to December, 2020, the Secretary General of WAPP, Mr. KI Apolonaire Seingui said that despite the negative impact of the pandemic, WAPP has continued to make gaint strides towards the implementation of a competitive regional electricity market. He informed the board that the WAPP membership had increased to 36 member utilities with one observer.

The Sec. Gen. also spoke on the status of implementation of the various projects handled by the WAPP secretariat which are at various stages of execution; these include the 330kV WAPP North Core Interconnection Project linking Nigeria to Niger, Benin/Togo and Burkina Faso as well as the 330kV Median Core Interconnection Project that would connect Nigeria, Benin, Togo, Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire among others.

On the establishment of Regional Electricity Market, The Sec. Gen. said that the Regional Market is the ultimate goal set for the WAPP by the ECOWAS Heads of State and Government and that the WAPP Information and Coordination Center (WAPP ICC). He noted that he department in charge of activities related to the Regional Market has done a lot towards establishing the Market in line with the WAPP Market Roadmap. Activities include the Implementation of the Synchronization project of WAPP Interconnected Power Systems and the improvement of Distribution Utilities Performance targeting distribution loss reduction among others.

The WAPP Executive Board consists of 15members, eleven (11) permanent member, three (3) rotating members and one (1) honorary member. The WAPP Executive Board meeting precedes the Donors coordination Meeting and the WAPP General Assembly.

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