Eko Electricity Distribution Company, EKEDC, under Tinuade Sanda has been busy changing the narratives within the Distribution sector. The Company’s corporate strategy and investment decisions under Sanda, has been geared towards maximisation of profit, and satisfaction of its customers.
The Tinuade Sanda led Electricity distribution company has never been self-absorbed, a corporate culture that has been the conventional approach for many companies in Nigeria, Africa and globally.
Recently, EKEDC under Sanda, was applauded by the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu after it partnered Elektron Energy, embarking on a 30-megawatts (MW) embedded natural gas-fired power plant in the state worth $50 million.
The Independent Power Plant (IPP), which is planned to supply uninterruptible electricity through dedicated 33kV and 11kV distribution networks exclusively to identified customers, is expected to serve businesses and residents in Victoria Island with improved electricity when completed.
Stakeholders in the industry have also applauded the collaborative possibility exhibited by local financiers in supporting the project with necessary liquidity, seen by stakeholders as a model template in bridging the power generation gap in the country.
Lets give her flowers to her, while she is still on the saddle of leadership, Tinuade Sanda is one undoubted leader of the new corporate culture, driving new possibilities.
She has been an ardent advocate of Structured Welfarism, and this has been the fuel behind her late successes at the company. Under her leadership, EKEDC has embarked on corporate social responsibilities which elevates social intervention as a core and integral part of the corporate essence, vision and culture, not as a mere voluntary, expendable tokenist offering.
She acknowledged the need to deliver optimal power supply to Lagosians, a critical need that sparked the conversations on the project, when Eko Disco pioneered the discussions on embedded generation.
Inextricably linked with the project was the gap in generation which had been a lingering issue impacting service delivery in the power value chain, particularly, the ability of Discos to meet with its service-level commitment to customers.
Currently, the industry in Lagos still records about 4,000MW as its peak generation, which had been shown by studies that the same was not enough to service Lagos State estimated as having a population of over 27 million people.
With an increased capacity, there is the incentive to surpass the demand. Beyond any doubt, the gains which this project presents are humongous.
Not only for the communities and stakeholders, but also the gains this project presents equally extends to the partners.
With a Multi-Year Tariff Order (MYTO) load allocation of 513MW, an addition of 30MW, edges Eko Disco towards meeting its demand requirement to its customers. The power plant would employ cutting-edge technologies, ensuring efficiency, reliability, and reduced environmental impact. The power generated at the facility would not only meet the Disco’s current energy demands but also anticipate and accommodate the future needs of Lagosians.
Recall that when Sanda was appointed about a year ago, it became absolutely clear within days that it was no longer business as usual- a carefully defined sustainable social impact plan was to be developed and consistently implemented. To realize this, she speedily developed and launched an integrated CSR plan with four pillars. The pillars are Health & Wellness, Education, Technology, and Sports.The new partnership with Elektron, will create employment for local workers, stimulate local businesses, and foster a spirit of empowerment and inclusivity.
According to reports, the Principal and Chief Financial Officer of Elektron Energy, Deen Solebo, who disclosed that the project would cost about $50 million, said the project has a construction timeline of 18 months with potential to eradicate up to 1000 diesel generators within its coverage area.
The CFO added that the plant was expected to commence operation by the fourth quarter (Q4) 2024 and would have an expected lifespan of 20 years.
The Managing Director, Elektron, Tola Talabi, said the project had shown clearly that when regulatory roadblocks were removed, bankable projects could attract the needed funding.
“We hope to replicate this kind of project across the landscape of Nigeria as this is the first time an embedded power plant has been built in partnership with a distribution company.
“This project is the first of its kind, where a natural gas IPP will be directly embedded into a Disco’s distribution network for supply to Identified end-user customers”, Talabi said.
Apart from the huge project, Sanda has been able to foster impactful projects consistent with her four pillars, including EKEDC’s partnership with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
EKEDC and USAID launched the Energy Club programme in Lagos secondary schools, a STEM initiative aimed at boosting the next generation’s interest and participation in subjects related to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
It also donated of a full-range children’s playing ground to Oremeji 2 Nursery and Primary School, Tolu School Complex and Ajegunle -< Apapa school; sponsorship of the 2022 Lagos International Polo tournament, the T20 Invitational Women’s Cricket tournament, and the Festival of Table Tennis organized by the International Table tennis Federation.
Sanda has led her team admirably in the pursuit of objectives that transcend the pure pursuit of profit. And the reward has been two-fold— profit has soared and brand value has appreciated. Good social responsibility policy has indeed been good business for EKEDC.
Olamide Adeniji is a member of the editorial team of TheScript Newspaper