Minister of Power Babatunde Raji Fashola has defended the appointment of Mr. Usman Gur Mohammed as the new interim Managing Director/ Chief Executive Officer of the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN).
In a statement released by the Deputy Director (Press) in the ministry, Mr.Etore Thomas, the minister said the appointment was born out of the need to take the company to a higher level of operational effectiveness and to perform its functions optimally.
The minister confirmed the appointment when he appeared before the National Assembly Joint Committee on Power, Steel Development and Metallurgy stating that the appointment was not a criterion for the loan, but was based on the expertise the new managing director would bring on board.
The minister had appeared before the committee following petitions written to the Senate by Staff of TCN, under the umbrella of the National Association of Electricity and Allied Companies asking the Senate to intervene.
While responding to questions, the minister stated that the appointment of Mohammed had nothing to do with the AfDB’s loan to Nigeria to help reform the power sector.
“The appointment of the interim MD for TCN was designed to ensure responsiveness to the needs of DISCOs and GENCOs, and to improve their efficiency.’’
The Minister further allayed fears of dampening staff’s morale, saying that this should not be joined to the issue of the appointment.
He added that the President had used his prerogative to appoint whomever he picked to manage the affairs of TCN.
The two committees had earlier stated that the National Assembly was not interested in dictating to the minister on how to run his Ministry.
The National Assembly, the committee said wanted to ensure that the rule of law was followed at all times, for the sake of accountability and transparency.