Senator Iroegbu in Abuja
The German firm, LTI RE Energy and consortium of renewable firms NIGUS, plan to invest as much as $600 million to generate power from solar and renewable energy in the Northeast.
The Executive Secretary, Nigeria Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC), Ms. Yewande Sadiku, who affirmed this during the official launch of the project in Abuja, lauded the partnership, which she said would lead to the generation of 500 mega watts of electricity in the country within the next five years.
Sadiku noted that the federal government is committed to investing in the Northeast and making Nigeria the hub of renewable energy in West Africa.
The NIPC boss, who was represented by a director in the Commission, Mr. Abubakar Yerima, described the power sector as a critical to the economy because its multiplier effect on all other sectors of the economy.
“This project is in line with President Muhammadu Buhari’s efforts to improve the country’s power sector. Investors can come in to invest in your country if the key sectors like power is not in order,” she said.
The Chief Sales officer, LTI RE Energy, Mr. Chris Voet, also said that the firm is confident about investing in the North East.
“We are partnering with NIGUS and they know the country, they know what to do and we are supporting them. They are developing the project and we are supporting them with our expertise in the country.
“Our idea is to flag up our investment in Nigeria, because Nigeria can supply energy to other countries. In Nigeria there is basic and best opportunity to invest. Nigeria also has the requirements we can use to excel in other countries,” Voet said.
“We are starting now with the plants on ground so we are breaking with 100 megawatts in the first quarter of 2017,” he added.
Also, the executive director, NIGUS, Major Gen, Dili Aliyu (rtd) said that the investment was in line with the federal government’s efforts to rebuild the Northeast region.
“What we are doing is to strengthen the nation’s power sector. We want to give people residing in the Northeast hope. Adamawa get less than 5 mega watts. We want to look at a country beyond oil sector, giving people a better tomorrow.
“Our greatest motivation is to empower people and give them hope; we will be employing 16,000 to 17,000 youth to carry out this project.
“We fought the war in the Northeast to make the lives of people residing there meaningful, so when our team sat to bring this investment to this country, I insisted that we will kick start the project in the North East,” Aliyu said.