Jonathan made the announcement while unveiling his road map for the reforms of the power sector.
He urged PHCN members of staff to see the new development as in the best interest of the nation, adding that many of them would form the nucleus of the new companies.
The President said that the Federal Government would hands off from the generation and distribution of electricity.
“Government will encourage private participation in these areas. The private sector will be responsible for the generation and distribution,” Jonathan said.
According to him, Federal Government will still own the transmission grids throughout the country but will be managed by the private sector.
He said that his administration would soon commission independent power producers, international oil companies and other companies to generate electricity.
Jonathan said that the selected companies must have the capacity to produce at least 5,000MW.
The President explained that the plants were expected to begin production in 2012, saying that government would provide them with credit financing to build the power plants.
He expressed the hope that within the next three years, power plants would be built in Gombe, Kogi, Enugu and Benue.
He said that government would buy the electricity produced by the private firms and sell to the distribution companies.
Jonathan stated that government had reconstituted the National Electricity Regulatory Commission, adding that list of members would be sent to the National Assembly on Monday.
“I also took part to select the chairman and he has the same pedestal with INEC chairman. We decided to do so because we need a revolution in the power sector,” he declared.
Commenting on the nation’s energy tariff, the President said that it was the lowest in West African sub-region, adding that it would be raised.
He, however, assured Nigerians that the new tariff would not be too exorbitant beyond what an ordinary consumer could afford.
Petroleum Resources Minister Diezani Alison-Madueke attributed the increase in the demand for natural gas to the growth in thermal plants.
The Governor of the Central Bank, Lamido Sanusi who was represented by Dr Kingsley Moghalu, said more than N300 billion had been approved by the apex bank as power intervention fund.
He said the bank had also approved investment of more than N500 billion Debenture stock to be disbursed by the Bank of Industry to fast-track government programmes on power.
News Agency of Nigeria
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