Page Nav


Breaking News:


Ads Place

Stop Planned Sales of NCC’s Five Coal Blocks, Sen. Ngwu's Committee Writes BPE


*Gives agency 7-day ultimatum to submit relevant documents

Sunday Aborisade in Abuja 

The Senate Committee on Solid Minerals Development has directed the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) to stop all the processes for the privatisation (sales) of the remaining five coal blocks belonging to the Nigerian Coal Corporation (NCC) with immediate effect.

The committee also gave BPE seven days ultimatum to submit all documents detailing the transactions and status of coal blocks in the country.

The directive followed publications in some national dailies on April 4, 2023 in which BPE placed advertisements for expression of interest for public bidding of NCC five Coal Blocks.

The Committee’s Chairman, Senator Osita Ngwu (Enugu-West), stated this in a letter addressed to the BPE Director General, dated October 10, 2023 with ref no SEN/EW/022/010/2023. 

He listed the NCC’s assets put up for sale as: Amansiodo Coal Block, Onyema Coal Block, Okpara Coal Block, Inyi Coal Block and Agwasi-Azagba Coal Block.

The documents demanded by the lawmakers in the letter include: Authorisation issued to the BPE to commence with the privatization process; update on the coal to power project of the Ministry of Solid Minerals Development (MSMD) list and sales costs of all the assets of NCC (building, lands, machinery) sold by BPE and detailed status on the current state of the earlier privatized nine blocks listed in the advert.

Others are copies of the process used in privatization of the nine blocks, agreements between the NCC and the concessionaires, the authorization and sales agreement and cost procuring the coal washery built by Kopex contractors, Poland; the current status and capacities of the coal briquette plants at Enugu State and Ankpa, Kogi State, as well as the weigh bridges at Enugu, Okaba and Owukpa, status of geometric power, 1,000MW coal fired power plant and current status of the Oji River Coal Power Plant.

The committee noted the failed attempts by the BPE from 2002 till date, recalling that in spite of former pledges to hand over the coal industry to credible investors, none of the nine (9) privatised blocks are operational, while virtually all the non-core assets of the corporation, such as lands, buildings, machinery and other moveable assets have all been sold. 

The letter read in part: “We write in response to the above-mentioned publication circulated through some major daily newspapers namely: Thisday, Daily Sun and Guardian on Tuesday April 4, 2023 on which you have received submission from interested persons on Expression on Interest, and against which you want to sell the under listed properties: Amansiodo Coal Block, Onyeama Coal Block, Okpara Coal Block, Inyi Coal Block, Agwasi-Azagba Coal Block.

“The reasons adduced in the publications were: ‘The Bureau of Public Enterprises, in pursuant of the FGN economic policy on diversification and improved economy commenced the reform of the NCC by advertising the 9 avaliable coal blocks. 

“While three of the coal blocks (Ogboyega North, Ogboyega South and Okaba) were successfully taken, one of the coal blocks is currently on a pilot project on coal to power of the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development (MMSD). 

“While the Senate supports all credible moves to diversify and grow our economy, it is also our duty to oversight the accuracy of claims made in either the procurement or disposal of public facilities or utilities.”

No comments