Ministry of Power to commence micro off-grid power initiative

Prof Chinelo Nebo29 October 2013, Abuja – The Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, has reiterated the determination of the federal government to speed up its rural electrification programme, which it hopes will bring electric power to rural communities in Nigeria.

Nebo stated recently at the unveiling of a 2X60 MVA 132/33kV transmission substation constructed by the Project Management Unit (PMU) of the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) with support from the World Bank in Karu Abuja that the ministry would begin to implement micro off-grid power projects shortly.

While reassuring of improved power generation and supply within the next couple of months, following President Goodluck Jonathan’s ongoing scheduled commissioning of power generation projects under the National Integrated Power Projects (NIPP) framework, Nebo stated that rural areas of Nigeria would not be left out in the improved state of power supply within the country.

He said: “Let me seize this opportunity to intimate you with government’s plan to stimulate development of renewable and alternative energy for rural electrification and farm clusters by exploring these energy sources for viability in producing electricity.

“For each rural community, the ministry of power will implement micro-off grid wind or solar powered lighting systems to light up homes, community common areas or centres and major inlet/outlet roadways into communities. This scheme will provide access to electricity to the rural areas with distributed or low capacity, few kilowatts, solar or wind-powered energy-efficient lighting systems in two phases, by the end of 2014.”

The minister added: “Concrete results are beginning to manifest from the tireless work of all stakeholders in the electricity industry, especially in the past two years of the Jonathan administration. We must give Mr. President the credit for making power a cardinal point of his transformation agenda, and for launching and proactively driving the power sector reform roadmap.

“Evidence that the reforms are working is also seen in the success story of the ambitious power sector privatisation exercise, the largest and most transparent so far in Africa, the sustenance of generation and distribution infrastructure ahead of privatisation, even in the face of zero budget provision in the current year, and the peaceful resolution of labour issues, among other things.

– This Day

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