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National Blackout: Here’s why you had to use the candle last night

Here’s why you had to use the candle last night

There was a nationwide blackout on the second day of the new year. Here's what happened.

As Manchester City took Watford apart during the opening exchanges on Tuesday, January 2, 2018, a bang rang round Nigeria. The national grid, fragile as always, had collapsed. Again.

Nigeria’s power sector is often a case study in erratic output. But Tuesday’s was so bad, every home in the country had no power as the grid caved in.

It was a national blackout arriving just hours after President Muhammadu Buhari touted his administration’s gains in the power sector in his New Year message.

“If the light in your area just went out, please retweet”, Meets Media’ Managing Editor, Ayomide Tayo, tweeted at exactly 9:38pm on the second day of the new year.


Within minutes, retweets bordering on power outage on a national scale, were clogging dark timelines.

Power was restored in some homes around midnight, but most parts of Nigeria haven’t seen a flicker of light from the grid since the nationwide blackout.

“We haven’t had public power in Bariga since it happened”, blogger Olubayo Paul told Meets Media.


Fatimah Oyelami said; “ours was restored around midnight, but went off soon after”.

“Loool, Nigeria’s power grid just collapsed. Welcome to 2018”, tweeted Joachim McEbong.

"It's shocking that we are shocked that there is no electricity", tweeted Dijaji Prime.

One respondent described lights dimming before everywhere went pitch black–a picture painted by thousands of other respondents.

It was also exactly how it played out in this writer’s apartment.

Fire incident

The Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing says the national outage was caused by a fire incident which blew up gas pipelines feeding power plants.


“Regrettably, after a sustained period of increasing production and distribution of power since Sept 2017 to date, the Nigerian Gas Processing Transportation Company Ltd has reported a fire incident on its Escravos Lagos Pipeline System near Okada, Edo State on Tue, 2nd Jan, 2018.

“The incident requires a shutdown of the pipeline supplying gas to Egbin 1,320MW; Olorunsogo NIPP 676MW, Olorunsogo 338MW, Omotosho NIPP 450MW, Omotosho 338 MW and Paras 60MW power stations.

ALSO READ: Here's full text of president's new year address

“The sudden loss of generation due to interruption in gas supply from these stations caused the national transmission grid to trip off around 20:20 on 2nd January 2018. The national transmission grid is owned and operated by the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN).

“Most of Nigeria's power generation is from thermal power stations that require gas for fuel. The gas is produced by oil and gas companies overseen by the Ministry of Petroleum Resources.


“The gas is delivered to the power stations through pipelines owned and operated by Nigerian Gas Processing and Transportation Company Ltd (NGPTC), a subsidiary of Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC).

“TCN and the generation companies are working to restore operation of the national grid.

“Once the national grid is restored, output from the hydroelectric power stations and all other unaffected gas fired thermal power stations will be increased to the extent possible to minimize the impact of loss of generation from the affected power stations.

“We urge members of the public to bear with us as we work to overcome this setback which will be temporary”.

Curated: Meets

Local AFP Photo

Local AFP is a Reporter at Meets Media, a digital journalist who reports on and some other section of our website.

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