The Federal Government on Tuesday said it would no longer condone substandard electrical installations and the activities of quacks in the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI). Fashola The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, said this at the revalidation and certification of electrical installation contractors in the country. The certification of contractors involved in electrical installations is a written assurance document issued by the Nigerian Electricity Management Services Agency (NEMSA) to qualified electrical contractors.
The certification is based on the acquisition of competency, technical skills and expertise by the contractors that undertake inspection and certification of electrical installations in the country. Fashola, represented by the Minister for State for Power, Works and Housing, Alhaji Mustapha Shehu, said that the life of every Nigerian was important to government, hence the certification of electrical installation contractors. He said that it was the responsibility of government to ensure that Nigerians did not lose their lives and property while assessing electricity. The minister said that the certification signified the Federal Government’s commitment to standard and best practices in the power sector, adding that the certification was in the interest of Nigerians.
“With this certification and revalidation, we are assuring the citizens of this great country that their safety and that of their property will not be compromised. “An important component of the industry is the quality of electrical equipment as well as qualification of those responsible for our electrical installationsm“ he said. The minister said that the certification would promote and increase technical capacity of the contractors to guarantee safety of workmen, lives and property in the industry. Fashola said that the exercise was subject to professionalism and competence, noting that the certificate would be withdrawn where the holder was adjudged to be negligent in the discharge of his duties. He said that government would not tolerate any contractor involved in gross misconduct, adding that defaulters would face stiff and appropriate sanctions. “Where misconduct constitutes a criminal offence, the affected contractor will be liable for prosecution, such professionals will be reported to their professional institutes for necessary sanctions to be applied.“ He said that given government’s efforts at achieving incremental, stable and uninterrupted power supply, the role of NEMSA was critical in stamping out unethical practice hitherto engaged by uncertified electrical installation contractors.
Fashola said that the task of sanitising the industry in terms of safety and standards was the collective responsibility of all stakeholders. He called on Nigerians to insist on the best quality of electrical installations and demand full value in the power sector. The minister said that government was committed to ensuring that electrical installations in NESI and other work places were handled by qualified and certified electrical personnel through NEMSA . Earlier, the Managing Director of NEMSA, Mr Peter Ewesor, said that the activities of the contractors would be closely monitored to ensure compliance with technical standards and regulations governing the industry. The certification, he said, was designed to check quackery and indulgence in sharp practice that might lead to electrical accidents, especially electrocution and the outbreak of fire resulting in loss of lives and properties. Ewesor said that that the attendant penalties associated with non –compliance with the rules would help reduce the use of substandard materials and equipment and high number of electrical accidents. Other benefits of the certification, according to him, include the elimination of bad construction practice of electrical installations and bad wiring of houses. He said for effective enforcement and monitoring of the contractors activities, NEMSA would mandate them to have a template of their details visibly displayed on the customer’s premises, networks, power systems and substations. This, Ewesor said, was designed to trace a contractor in case of observed sharp practice and mishap.