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From Reuters: Nigeria names preferred bids for state power firms

The following report, written by Joe Brock and Camillus Eboh, was published on October 16, 2012: ABUJA, Oct 16 (Reuters) - Nigeria announced the preferred bidders on Tuesday for 10 state power distribution firms it is selling for 197.25 billion naira ($1.25 billion) as part of a plan to reform the country's moribund electricity sector. Power outages, which amount to several hours per day, are the biggest brake on growth in Africa's second biggest economy and a frequent complaint of Nigeria's 160 million people. In 2010, President Goodluck Jonathan announced plans to break up the state power company and sell it off as 11 distribution and six generation companies. He has promised a tenfold increase in electricity by 2020. Previous state sell-offs in Nigeria were blighted by political infighting and corruption, which have caused years of delays. Regulators said this process …