FG: Nigeria Requires $4bn to Provide Clean Energy Annually

Goddy Jedy-Agba

By Emmanuel Addeh

The federal government stated yesterday that Nigeria would require $4 billion every year to provide Nigerians with universal access to sustainable, clean and renewable energy.

Minister of State, Power, Mr. Goddy Jedy-Agba who spoke at a virtual global power sector players’ conference presided over by the United Nations Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, explained that the off-grid power sources have become more competitive since the removal of fuel subsidy.

Jedy-Agba, in a statement by his Media Aide, Mr. Ofem Oket, noted that the government was desirous of ensuring that there is adequate supply of electricity to consumers through the provision of off-grid electricity.

“Our ambition is demonstrated by the recent removal of the fuel subsidy in Nigeria which now makes the off-grid sector more competitive, as well as the 5 million solar connections programme which was included in the COVID-19 recovery strategy and the Economic Sustainability Plan (ESP),” he said.

While urging global partners to support the programme, the minister stressed that Nigeria was taking steps to merge its energy access and energy transition plan as the largest population without electricity globally resides within its borders.

He argued that it was important to give access to the country’s 85 million people without electricity, using renewable sources so as to maintain Nigeria and indeed Africa’s low contribution to carbon emission.

Jedy-Agba declared that financing has been a major constraint, saying the present administration had identified areas of conflicts including accountability, transparency and technical capacity and has gone ahead to address these challenges.

“Clean and renewable energy is the way to go for a sustained power sector reforms in the country to hand over a prestigious legacy in the power sector for successive governments,” he stated.

Earlier, the UN secretary general noted that African countries needed to embrace the development of clean and renewable energy supply sources to reduce the pressure on on-grid supply which has been insufficient over the years.

Guterres stated that the UN was prepared to give the necessary support to Nigeria, disclosing that the world body is currently supporting the Nigerian power sector to stabilise supply.

Also speaking at the conference, the President of African Development Bank (AFDB). Dr. Akunwumi Adesina, also pledged the support of the organisation to the power sector through its public/private initiatives to ensure that there is stability in the power sector across African countries.

He said the bank had continued to formulate and implement power sector friendly policies in order to boost manufacturing, industrialisation and the informal sector for sustainable growth and development.

Other participating organisations at the event included the International Energy Agency (IEA), European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the African Union (AU).

Meanwhile, President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the appointment of Mr. Barka Sajou as the Executive Director, Technical Services, Rural Electrification Agency (REA) and representative, north east, on the board of the agency.

This was contained in a letter conveying the approval signed by the Chief of Staff to the president, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari and addressed to Jedy-Agba, who supervises the agency.

Sajou, whose appointment took immediate effect, replaces Mr. Muhammed Wasaram, who retired from the federal civil service on January 7, 2021, on the attainment of the mandatory 60 years.