Power-driven, How Heather Onoh Plans to Impact Nigeria


Lekan Fatodu

When preparing for a homecoming, the enthusiasm of most Nigerians living abroad usually gets doused with the thought of prevailing bad roads, poor Medicare and epileptic power supply in their home-country.

Clearly, most people may not know the huge amount Nigeria is losing in potential investments with the critical infrastructural deficiency due to lack of proper record-keeping in the country.
That said, despite all the detailed challenges, a few but highly determined Nigerians are set to face some of the country’s socio-economic problems head-on with a view to proffering enduring solutions.

Heather Onoh, a Nigerian formerly resident in Canada, is one of these problem-solvers and pathfinders. The intellectually-profound and accomplished business woman once affirmed that she will be more fulfilled when sufficient efforts are made to close the gap between the haves and the have-nots in Nigeria. And having identified lack of power as a major harbinger of the socio-economic disparities amongst Nigerians, Heather is putting all her energy and resources into providing alternative power to several homes and individuals across Nigeria particularly the poor who live in remote communities in the country.

Through her innovative company, Smarter Grid International (SGI), the proactive entrepreneur has been delivering sustainable, affordable and efficient solar electricity to off-grid communities that are parts of the 55% of the Nigerian population who, according to UN’s reports, live without access to electricity.

As part of the goals of her organisation for a better Nigeria, it is hoped that replacing kerosene or burning firewood will reduce health risks and improve the confidence and comfort of families and entire communities.

Nigeria will certainly be better positioned with courageous and idea-filled ex-Diasporas like Heather who are returning home to give perfect answers to some of the difficult questions holding their country down.