Buhari appoints new chair for Nigeria’s electricity regulatory body, NERC

President Muhammadu Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has nominated James Momoh, a professor, for the position of Chairman of the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), a statement by the presidency has said.

The President’s nominee to the Senate for confirmation is a Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science; and Director of Energy Services and Controls at Howard University, United States of America.

Mr. Momoh, a Life Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and Fellow of the Nigeria Society of Engineers, has over three decades of teaching and research experience in power system, smart grid, optimisation and power communications.

The 1987 recipient of the National Science Foundation-US White House Presidential Young Investigator Award is a widely published scholar and has held several professional leadership positions in the academia.

Prof Momoh has a Doctorate degree in electrical engineering from Howard University; Master’s degrees in systems engineering from the University of Pennsylvania; and electrical engineering from Carnegie University.  He obtained his Bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering in 1975 from Howard University.

“President Buhari strongly believes that Prof Momoh has the technical knowledge, capacity and integrity to lead the Commission’s effort to bring about the much needed change in Nigeria’s power sector,” the statement by Garba Shehu, Senior Special Assistant to the President on media and publicity, said.

President Buhari had in July 2016 appointed Akintunde Akinwande, a U.S.-based Nigerian engineer and professor,  to the position.

But after claiming scheduling difficulties for months, Mr. Akinwande, a professor of electrical engineering and computer science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, failed to show up in Nigeria to take up the position.

The university don was due to appear before the Senate Committee on Power for screening in October, but his absence stalled the proceeding.

Subsequently, Enyinnaya Abaribe, chairman of the senate committee, postponed the exercise indefinitely.

Reporters then concluded that Mr. Akinwande’s non-appearance meant he had forfeited the nomination.

But Mr. Akinwande told PREMIUM TIMES at the time that he only had scheduling difficulties.

“I did not reject the nomination of the president,” he said at the time. “I had scheduling difficulties which I had informed the concerned parties about.”


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  • kinsly

    Quality pedigree.

  • Arkhuma

    Hopefully he will still be able to thrive in our self inflicted hostile and suffocating environment.

  • Apostel

    Ok, let him start in Calabar…

  • musa aliyu

    All these foreign-trained whatever, or bookish things will only make things worse in the country. Nothing will work with professors. Few of them know how to practicalise the theories in their gaddem heads.

    • Curseless

      Your conclusion is so warped that it is not funny. This is why many Nigerians in the diaspora are hesitating in coming home. Yes, we have capable people in Nigeria, but may be if those in the diaspora are encourage they can share some of the immense experience from extensive exposure to current technology with our current. As long as people can deliver, to me it makes no difference. As a Howardite and a professor myself at Howard University I’m proud of his selection and the onus now is on him to perform. I also plead with the people on the ground not to frustrate him

      • share Idea

        Your last statement below is the reasom why those diaspora do not perform in coming back to Nigeria to work…
        “I also plead with the people on the ground not to frustrate him”

        Those diaspora usually work in a meritocratic system and when confronted with ethnic and quota system operated in Nigeria, they become liability to the administration. It even becomes worae when the leader they are serving is clueless like the cirrent administration that believes in strongman mentality instead of strong institutions.

    • Otile

      I hate the mentality of these illiterate anti intellectuals. See the
      bitterness in this one: …foreign-trained whatever, bookish things,
      their gaddem heads, some very_foolish illiterates mockingly refer to
      people as fake intellectuals. This is the same dull mentality that led
      to the formation of Boko Haram, the primitive idea that western
      education is haram. Unfortunately some of these dullards have been
      taken to US and Europe, but simply because they can’t learn they become
      bitter about intellectuals. These bad-bellied dunderheads have nothing
      but disdain and insults for people of knowledge.

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