French agency donates €170m for transmission network in Abuja, others

20 June 2015, Abuja – The Federal Government, disclosed weekend, that it received a grant of 170 million Euros from the Agence Francaise Development, AFD, to build power transmission network in the Federal Capital territory, FCT, and its neighbouring Nasarawa State.

Energy Crisis Threatens the Western Power GridsThe French agency also made a donation to the tune of $200million towards expansion of electricity transmission grid in Lagos State.

The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Power, Ambassador Godknows Igali, disclosed this in Abuja, during the inauguration of the Steering Committee, on feasibility study on enhancing vocational training delivery for the power sector in Nigeria.

Igali is the Chairman of the Steering Committee aimed to develop a new strategy plan for National Power Training Institute of Nigeria, NAPTIN, being sponsored by AFD in collaboration with CPCS of Canada, with the purpose of increasing private sector collaboration and sustainability, focusing on four pillars for development.

The Steering Committee is comprised of officials from Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), Ministry of Finance, National Planning Commission, NAPTIN, DISCOS and GENCOS.

The four pillars for development include organisational and corporate governance, customer focus (marketing orientation), skill and capacity building and physical infrastructure. The first phase of training programme designed to cover the period of four years, according to Celine Gratadour, the Project Manager, will gulp a total of 260,000 Euros.

Gratador said further that the 2-phase strategy of the committee will help increase NAPTIN sustainable programmes, insisting that the new partnership between the French and Nigerian agencies, both public and private, is to launch NAPTIN Training capabilities to higher levels.

Igali, who presided over the event, said that Nigerian Government is grateful for the French initiative, as it would assist NAPTIN to build on the new thinking matrix of sourcing fund for its programmes outside conventional Government allocation.

The Permanent Secretary said that with this initiative NAPTIN will deliver on its mandate in critical areas of capacity building for the sector.

According to him, “As a knowledge driven institution, NAPTIN will make the sector’s workforce to be more industry compliant”, “as the diagnostic Audit proposed by the Steering Committee, will entail a detailed feasibility study to also risk management strategy”.

The package of assistance will also include a study tour of Morocco, for the purpose of understudying the model of their vocational training facilities.

The Permanent Secretary used the occasion to also thank the French, and other development partners, including Japanese International Co-operation Agency (JICA) for their continuous assistance and interventions.

He further stated that Nigerian Government will ever remain grateful for the recent approval of 70 million Euros by AFD for the strengthening of the nation’s transmission network within FCT and its environs.

Earlier, in his address, NAPTIN, Director General, Engr. Reuben Okeke, described the AFD partnership as historic, noting that the intervention will boost the capacity of the critical work force to fit into today’s Nigeria’s power sector.

Furthermore, the inter-ministerial partners, Discos, Gencos will through synergy address the existing training gaps tailor-made for the privatized energy sector.

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– Vanguard

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