22 March 2013, Sweetcrude, ABUJA – The European Union and the German Agency, (GIZ), have said they would provide grants in the sum of 15 million euros and 9 million euros respectively to boost Nigeria’s Energy Support Programme (NESP).
Speaking at the opening session of the Nigerian–German Energy Programme in Abuja, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Power, Ambassador Godknows Igali said the proposed grant will assist Government in achieving the core objective of privatization of the sector.
He said the EU fund would not be utilized to build plants, but could be used to provide pilot schemes and other related projects in at least 9 locations spread evenly across the country.
While ensuring the donors that the grants would be judiciously utilized, he said, “We need more support and partnership from Germany and the rest of the world, donor agencies, development partners and the EU as we do not have the capacity in solving the problems alone.”
In the area of capacity building, he said there is huge gap in all aspect of power hence Government in post-privatized power sector must stand in firmly to close the gap hence its privatization objectives would not be realized.
Energy sector remains the key issue in German–Nigerian relations, while recalling agreements and Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed during the State visits of both President Angele Merkel and President Goodluck Jonathan, the Permanent Secretary said the Germans will assist on diversify our energy mix as we are naturally endowed with solar, bio mass and hydro energy resources.
He noted that there are 254 Dams in Nigeria, only a few had turbines provided in their designs, even at that the turbines are not activated, hence they are not in use.
“The level of renewable energy use in Nigeria is minimal inspite of our endowment, he commended past donor agency’s assistance in providing grant for Millennium Development Goals projects on energy mapping, going on in the 774 Local Government Areas across the country.
The Permanent Secretary also called action in addressing Nigerian’s deficiency in the areas of human and institutional capacity development.
The Senior Energy Adviser, GIZ, Klans Mitzlaff in his presentation at the forum called for adequate support for the energy sectors training hub –the National Power Training Institute of Nigeria (NAPTIN), to make it a national centre of excellence for human resources development in the energy sector.