Against the backdrop of the worsening electricity situation in Nigeria, mobile phone companies will this year spend 45.9 billion naira (US$282m) to power generators at their base stations.
According to the local Punch newspaper on Monday, Mobile phone operators including MTN, Globacom, Airtel, Etisalat, Starcomms, Visafone, MultiLinks, ZoomMobile and Mobitel power their Base Transceiver Stations with over 20,000 generators, which consume about 25 million litres of diesel monthly.
This means that the operators will require a minimum of 300 million litres of diesel to power their cell sites across the country this year, with the potential for the figure to increase if they add new base stations before the year ends.
The paper quoted the President, Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators of Nigeria, Mr. Gbenga Adebayo, as saying that licence obligations mandated network operators to provide services in all parts of the country for 24 hours, seven days a
week, and on 365-day availability basis, including in parts of the country where there was no electricity.
He said in as much as stable power supply continued to be a mirage in Nigeria, telecoms operators would have to bear additional costs to their businesses and suffer from the attendant logistical challenges.