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N32bn Lying Dormant In Bank Account Since 2003, Power Minister Speaks On Stalled Metering Project .



…Ziklagsis Network Limited, Unistar International Blamed For Nigeria’s Metering Gap

The Federal Government approved N32 billion in 2003 for the supply of three million prepaid meters to distribution companies over a three-year period. However, this fund has remained untouched in a bank account belonging to Ziklagsis Network Limited for over 20 years.

The Power Minister, Adebayo Adelabu, revealed this in a statement by his Special Adviser on Strategic Communications and Media Relations, Bolaji Tunji.

According to Adelabu, the tripartite agreement between the Federal Government, Ziklagsis, and Unistar International for the metering project stalled without any justification.

The situation came to light after the Nigerian Army wrote to the presidency requesting intervention to offset its outstanding electricity debts and meter its formations. This prompted the presidency to direct the power ministry to investigate the Army’s request and utilize the N32 billion with Ziklagsis.

Upon investigation, Adelabu on Wednesday said, “The agreement was not implemented while the fund remained in the bank account of Ziklagsis at the then Prudent Bank from where it moved to Skye Bank, Polaris and lately, Providus Bank”.

Explaining further, the power minister said, “The government proposed the metering of Ministries, Departments and Agencies to accurately determine the consumption of these MDAs and also reduce accumulated debts, and this was what led to the initiative to metre military formations nationwide.

“It was then that Ziklagsis was introduced to the Nigerian Army by the Ministry of Power. It was around this period that the Nigerian Army also introduced De Haryor Global Services to Ziklagsis to enable them to work together.

“In November 2022, discussion began on the project among the parties and an agreement was signed between the Nigerian Army as a client, Messrs Ziklagsis as project supervisor and De Haryor Global Services as a service provider to commence the metering projects in Army barracks at a cost of N12.7billion, under the MDAs metering project”.

Concerned about the over eight million metre gap in the country and the liquidity squeeze in the Nigeria Electricity Supply Industry, Adelabu wondered how money meant for a national project could be held up untouched for over 20 years by an individual.

“I, therefore, mounted pressure and escalated the matter to the presidency for the retrieval of the revolving fund from Messrs Ziklagsis plus accrued interest to date. This was duly approved by the President. Upon the President’s approval, N12.7 billion was therefore to be released in tranches to De Haryor Global Services to commence installation of already procured smart meters” Adelabu was quoted saying.