A fresh N904,546,641 million has been budgeted by Nigeria’s ministry of power in its proposed 2017 fiscal budget for the 10 megawatts (mw) Katsina wind farm, the country’s model wind power project which completion has so far run into hitches.
Still stuck in degrees of construction delays, the project at Lamber Rimi in Rimi Local Government Area of northern Katsina was reportedly contracted to French firm, Messrs Vergnet SA in 2010 at a contract sum of €18,500,000 plus N494, 020,000 with a completion period of 24 months. Its commissioning was scheduled for 2012, this has not happened four years after.
The technical characteristics of the project include 37 GEV MP wind turbines with rated power of 275 kilowatt (kW) which would produce 10.175mw of electricity. Its other characteristics are 32m diameter turbines which would run on tubular tower heights of 55m.
Despite claims by the last government of President Goodluck Jonathan that the wind farm was completely paid for and at 98 per cent completion when it left office, local media, Daily Trust reported in October 2015 that out of its 37 turbines, only 4 had been mounted, leaving 33 on ground to moulder.
Similarly, a French engineer was reportedly abducted at the project site in 2012, to further contribute to its many construction challenges.
Another report in February 2016 in the Guardian of Nigeria noted that the government of President Muhammadu Buhari voted in the 2016 budget of the power ministry, N963, 392,832 for the Katsina wind farm, and another N132,392,832 for the project within the same budget.
Details of these expenditures on the project were however not available for the public. OGN could not access this from the ministry as well.
The voting of a fresh N904 billion in the 2017 budget proposal for the project also came with no expenditure annotations.