The Zungeru Hydroelectric Power Plant in Nigeria has entered a crucial phase as testing commences, according to Federal Government announcements on Sunday, newswires have reported.

Situated in Niger State, the $1.3 billion project has now been successfully integrated into the national grid, refuting previous claims suggesting otherwise. Adebayo Adelabu, Minister of Power, provided insights into the project's significance, emphasizing its potential to generate 700MW, making it the second-largest hydroelectric facility in Nigeria following the Kainji Dam.

The plant, located along the Kaduna River near Zungeru town, is poised to produce 2.64 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity annually, meeting approximately 10% of Nigeria's domestic energy needs. Adelabu underscored the multifaceted benefits of the project, including flood control, irrigation water provisions, and facilities for fish breeding, all integrated into the plant's design.

Addressing inquiries surrounding the project's status, Adelabu confirmed its completion and the conclusion of the concession process. Mainstream Energy Limited, the current operators of Kainji and Jabba hydroelectric power plants, have taken over ownership following the official handover.

Adelabu explained that they are currently in the technical handover phase from the Chinese consultants to the concessionaire, with a one-year defect liability period for onsite contractors to rectify any issues.  Adelabu reassured stakeholders of ongoing efforts by the Ministry of Power, in collaboration with the concessionaire and the Bureau for Public Enterprise, to expedite the technical handover process.

The testing phase, initiated on Saturday alongside power generation, is anticipated to last one to two weeks before full-scale production commences.