Niger’s electricity company, Nigelec has been forced to cut power supply to seven out of the nation’s eight regions amidst the continued, crippling fuel scarcity which has almost grounded all business activities in Lagos, the nation’s commercial capital.
A media statement released in Cotonou disclosed that the power outage has affected seven of the country’s eight regions for the past 72 hours.
”This situation has caused (NIGELEC’s) principal provider to limit to a third its normal imports, which is at the base of the current disturbances observed on networks lately,” it further read.
Adding that, “NIGELEC has found itself therefore with the obligation to proceed with rolling blackouts.”
Landlocked Niger Republic became an oil producer in 2011, but still imports about 70 percent of its power needs from the Nigeria.
Some Nigeria’s analysts pointed out that attempts by the government to correct past errors in the administration of importation of petroleum products into the country, since the four refineries were not refining enough, was partly responsible for the scarcity.
The removal of fuel subsidy, stoppage of questionable payments to importers of the product and high exchange rate of naira to dollar were the other factors blamed for the scarcity that started September, last year.
Less than 15 percent of the population of Niger, considered to be one of the world’s least developed countries, has access to electricity, according to the World Bank.
Meanwhile, Niger’s uranium-mining region Agadez, which has an independent power plant, has not been affected by the power cuts.