Epileptic Power Supply: Lawmakers Urge FG to Seek Alternative Energy Sources

Udora Orizu in Abuja

The House of Representatives has urged the federal government to focus on exploration of renewable energy such as nuclear, solar, biomass, and wind as nationwide alternative sources of power supply to the people.

The House also urged the government to establish a clear investor-friendly framework for private sector investment in alternative power supply across the country.

The Green Chamber mandated its Committee on Power to liaise with relevant stakeholders in the public and private sectors to develop the best strategies for sustainable alternative and renewable energy distribution in the country.

The resolutions were sequel to the adoption of a motion on the need for alternative and renewable power supply in Nigeria sponsored by Hon. Chukwuma Umeoji at the plenary yesterday.

Moving the motion, Umeoji noted that the major driver of sustainable economic development growth is reliable electricity supply, and has remained on the front burner of all government initiatives.

He also noted that electricity in Nigeria is generated through thermal and hydropower sources and the main source of electricity generation comes from fossil fuels, especially gas, which accounts for 86 percent of the capacity in Nigeria with the remainder generated from hydropower sources.

The lawmaker further noted that a nation plagued with epileptic power supply must suffer delayed development and the risks associated with the loss of potential investors in the market.

He said Nigeria’s inability to achieve stable power supply over decades is a pointer to the fact that its over-reliance on gas and to a lesser extent, hydroelectric power sources alone needs to be reviewed.

He expressed concerns that traditional diesel generators emit greenhouse gases that have a detrimental effect on the environment, and given the dependence on generators across the country daily, the country is gradually heading to an era of natural disasters.

Umeoji further expressed concerns that lack of electricity supply in rural areas is a deterrent for businesses to thrive, thus, resulting in rural-urban migration which leaves the rural areas grossly underdeveloped.

According to him, “Aware that Nigeria is endowed with abundant renewable energy resources, the significant ones being solar energy, biomass, wind, and small and large hydropower with potential for hydrogen fuel, geothermal and ocean energies, however, the exploitation and utilisation of renewable energy resources in the country is very low.

“Further aware that to enhance energy security and sustainability through the diversification of feedstock for power generation, the use of coal and other renewable energy resources hitherto unused, such as wind, solar and biomass have to be fully deployed in partnership with private sector. Also cognizant that if the private sector is allowed to invest in mini-grid capabilities to services communities or local government areas, regions, or target industrial clusters, there will be a significant improvement in electricity distribution across the country.”

Also, at the plenary, the lawmakers adopting a motion sponsored by Hon. Sergius Ogun, Hon. Julius Ihonvbere and two others, condemned the attack on the campaign train of the senatorial candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) of the Kogi Central senatorial district, Mrs. Natasha Akpoti–Uduaghan, saying it’s as an act of political intolerance that should not be tolerated.

The sponsors, while moving the motion, said on December 3, 2022, suspected political thugs and hoodlums attacked the campaign train of Akpoti-Uduaghan during her rally from Okene to Adavi, injuring several persons and shooting one person.

They lamented that despite the avowed commitment of the federal government to implement the 35 percent Affirmative Action, discrimination against women seeking elective posts still exists in the country.

The lawmakers expressed concerns that at a time when all relevant stakeholders are suing for peace and calling on political actors to be tolerant of opposition, thugs and hoodlums, suspected to be sponsored by opposition parties, audaciously attack the campaign train of the senatorial candidate of a political party.

 They, therefore, urged the Inspector General of Police (IG), Usman Alkali Baba, to investigate the attack and prosecute those directly and remotely responsible for the attack.

They also mandated the Committees on Police Affairs and Legislative Compliance to ensure compliance and report back within four weeks for further legislative action.

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