Okonjo-Iweala, Nnaji and Ughelli Popular Winners at West African Power Industry Awards in Lagos

Lagos, Nigeria, November 21, 2014 --(PR.com)-- Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Nigerian Coordinating Minister for the Economy and Minister of Finance, former Nigerian Power Minister Bart Okechukwu Nnaji and Ughelli Power were some of the popular winners at the inaugural West African Power Industry Awards that were announced at the sold-out gala dinner ceremony during the West African Power Industry Convention (WAPIC) on Tuesday evening in Lagos. The award for Outstanding Woman in Power was presented to Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Prof Nnaji was honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award while Ughelli Power won for the Power Transaction of the Year.

More than 1000 power professionals are gathered in Lagos this week for the 11th edition of WAPIC where the latest updates on the Nigerian power industry’s privatisation and other opportunities in the regional energy sphere were discussed.

Utility industry celebrating its heroes

“Congratulations to all the winners!” says WAPIC programme director Irene Ochem. “The judges had a difficult time choosing between all the worthy finalists. It is wonderful to see such inspiring developments that are happening in this region and that Nigeria is taking such a pioneering role. The power sector is not looking back anymore but rather forging ahead and pushing boundaries. This bodes well for the future of the West African region.”

The winners in the West African Power Industry Awards categories are:

Lifetime Achievement Award
Winner: Professor Bart Okechukwu Nnaji

Professor Bart Okechukwu Nnaji, CON, is the former Minister of Power of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and has forged a distinguished career in his contribution towards the socio-economic development of the South-East geopolitical zone of Nigeria. Professor Nnaji is the current Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Geometric Power Limited, an indigenous private power development company. We recognise Prof Nnaji for the tremendous impact that he has had on the power sector and for his ministerial contributions in transforming the energy landscape in Nigeria.

Outstanding Woman in Power
Winner: Mrs Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala is a globally renowned Nigerian economist best known for her two terms as Finance Minister of Nigeria, her current position, and for her work at the World Bank, including several years as one of its Managing Directors. As the Coordinating Minister of the Economy, she is leading a dynamic economy with an established energy sector and a growing industry. She has improved Nigeria’s economic growth by making the energy sector more transparent. She has also been the force behind the privatisation process and has called for strategic focus on development, particularly in energy.

Best Rural Electrification Project
Winner: Solar Light Company

Solar Light Company promotes green energy with solar electric systems in Ghana and other West African countries that can be deployed in socio-economic activities within rural communities that are not connected to the national grid. This includes power for lighting, vital medical devices in hospitals, clinics and health posts as well as water pumping systems for crop irrigation and livestock watering. The company was recently awarded a 315kW solar installation in Ghana, which was the largest in the country at the time.

Best Renewable Energy Project
Winner: Quintas

Quintas Renewable Energy Solutions is solving the challenge of access to grid energy in the Ofosu community of Ondo State, which lacks access to grid electricity, but has a strong local farming industry. The company plans to develop a 500 kilowatt biomass power plant which will take advantage of the community’s agricultural and forestry residue, including sawdust from the four sawmills in the area that currently rely on expensive diesel for power.

Power Transaction of the Year
Winner: Ughelli Power

At the beginning of this year, Transcorp Ughelli Power Ltd and General Electric signed an agreement to expand the capacity of the Ughelli power plant by 1000MW over the next 3 to 5 years. Both parties also signed a separate agreement to rehabilitate the damaged GT 15 turbine at the Ughelli plant, which will add 115MW to the plant’s output.

Excellence in Power Transmission or Distribution
Winner: ABB

ABB has won a US$ 40-million order to design and build a new high-voltage power transmission corridor, including the installation of fibre optics, to Nigeria’s new federal capital of Abuja.

The order was placed by Nigeria’s Ministry of Power and Steel and the Nigerian Electricity Authority (NEPA) as part of an ongoing initiative to upgrade the country’s electrical infrastructure to support economic development.

Excellence in Power Generation
The Winner: Seven Energy

Seven Energy’s Uquo Gas Processing Facility has had significant impact on power generation, with the first commercial gas deliveries that commenced in early 2014 to the 190 MW Ibom Power station. With the addition of deliveries to the 560 MW Calabar NIPP power station. Seven Energy will be supplying gas to more than 10% of Nigeria’s power generation capacity.
West African Power Industry Convention (WAPIC)
Annemarie Roodbol
+27 21 700 3558