• Wednesday, April 17, 2024
businessday logo

BusinessDay

FG spends ₦46bn on electrification projects in three years

The Federal Government spent N45.89 billion on 1,375 electrification projects from 2020 to 2022, according to a new report by the Rural Electrification Agency (REA).

In the report themed ‘REA’s Strategic Intervention: Adopting a Programmatic Approach to Deliver Capital Projects’, it details how, in the last decade, it has implemented over 2,000 electrification projects, impacting the lives of an estimated 5,000,000 Nigerians across the country.

“The total installed capacity, under the capital projects, is estimated at over 600 megawatts (MW), equivalent to over 1,000,000 connections,” REA said.

A further breakdown of the 1,375 electrification projects shows that from 2020 to 2022, 19.11 billion was spent to install 238.40MW into the grid, which impacted 476,800 households and 2.38 million people.

Within these three years, N6.35 billion was spent to acquire 67 mini-grids that contributed 0.64MW, which affected 657.14 households and 32,900 people. REA also said that from 2020 to 2022, N1.03 billion was spent on 556 Solar Home Systems (SHS), which impacted 2780 people.

The electrification agency also spent N17.96 billion over these three years to provide solar streetlights covering 557.50 kilometers.

Abubakar Aliyu, minister of power, was quoted in the report as saying that the REA continued to blaze the trail in implementing innovative approaches to realising the Federal Government’s vision and targets for energy access.

“Adopting a programmatic approach to the delivery of capital projects centred on inter-agency collaboration will maximise the social impact of federal government interventions. This is highly commendable and a reference point for effective policy implementation,” he said.

This report showcases REA’s strategic interventions for 2022, notably the agency’s implementation of a programmatic approach to delivering capital projects.

Six communities will be equipped with a 100-kilowatt (kW) solar mini-grid system by 2022, according to the report. The systems were designed to prioritise productive users, including agro-processing businesses, homes, commercial users, and public spaces.

“Over 8,155 lives and 5,000 active farmers have been impacted with uninterrupted power supply and clean, affordable water, translating to over 60 direct and indirect jobs created, improved security, increased productivity, improved healthcare, as well as the decommissioning of over 40 diesel and petrol gensets,” it said.

“Based on the current and future estimations, the reductions in carbon emissions were also encouraging.”

The electrification agency added that in 2022, 1,392 solar irrigation pumps would have been distributed across the six geopolitical zones, reaching 1,300 male and 92 female beneficiaries and about 200 farm clusters.

It also said that over 11,000 lives and 6,000 farmers (including about 810 female farmers) have been directly impacted.

“This impact has translated to the illumination of over 170 farms with SolarStreet Lights (SSLs), the training of over 3,000 farmers on pump maintenance and new irrigation practices, and more importantly, cost savings (maintenance, fuel, etc.),” the REA said.

“For the latter, replacing diesel-powered pumps with solar-powered pumps is expected to increase average revenues by N150,000–N300,000. The feedback from beneficiaries was also positive.”

Read also: Lagos power plan sets blueprint for others

The REA said that 2,046 solar home systems were deployed across the six geopolitical zones, reaching and connecting 1,972 homes, five primary healthcare centres, 10 schools, 22 religious centres and seven offices.

According to the agency, over 10,000 lives and 5,000 students have been directly impacted by uninterrupted electricity, translating to over 350 direct and indirect jobs created, improved healthcare, and improved trading and domestic activities among women. The feedback from beneficiaries was also positive.

REA said that women in the beneficiary communities will have more access to technology, health, and food quality and quantity.

“Over 3,000 women involved in trading, tailoring, braiding, and other productive domestic activities are expected to increase their profit margin by at least 30 percent due to the improved lighting conditions from the SHS,” the REA said.

“The provision of solar pumps to farm clusters will also enable female farmers to increase their yields and profits.”