REA to deploy solar home systems in Makoko community
•Moves to build solar-powered electricity, mini-grid for Osun business owners, Ogun farm village
The Rural Electrification Agency (REA) has announced plans to increase deployment of Solar Home Systems (SHS) in the Makoko area of Lagos State and other communities suffering from inadequate power supply.
According to REA, the project is captured under the Federal Government’s National Poverty Reduction and Growth Strategy, given the agency’s role in providing access to electricity for unserved and underserved areas.
It said the Makoko project is more of a social service to mitigate environmental and economic challenges of the community.
Speaking during inspection and impact assessment of the project in Makoko Community, the Managing Director, REA, Ahmad Salihijo Ahmad, said the visit is part of a larger tour of the South West region, especially sites at Osogbo and Ijebu-Ode, pointing out that management would return and access impact of the projects in those communities.
“Stakeholder engagement (State governments, community groups and end-users) will continue, while all the feedback gathered is considered,” he said.
“What is clear, even in the immediate aftermath, is that using a decentralised approach towards electrification of communities, such as Makoko, is the right approach given the difficulty of operating a traditional grid system,” he added.
He said the visit is also part of the agency’s plans to scale up after assessing the impact of the project.
Also, as part of effort to address the problem of epileptic power supply in Nigeria and emission of carbon from generators, the agency has selected Ayegbaju International Market, Osogbo, for delivery of the next phase of its Energising Economies Initiative (EEI) project.
The solar electrification project is said to be about 95 per cent completed and would initially power 48 out of the 1,600 shops in the market for business owners to grow their businesses and drive more investments.
Addressing journalists during a working visit to inspect progress of the EEI project in Osogbo, at the weekend, Ahmad said that Ayegbaju International Market, Osogbo, and Abubakar Gumi Central Market, Kaduna, were selected among over 158 sites that have been audited directly through the agency to deliver the next phase of the project.
In another development, REA has also built a solar-powered mini-power grid system at Eriwe Farm Village, in Ijebu-Ode, Ogun State. The farm village hosts one of the biggest fish farms in Nigeria.
Leading his team to inspect the farm village sitting on over 156 hectares of land, the Managing Director of the agency told journalists that the 100-kilowatt mini-grid project was part of REA’s policies on alleviation of poverty, especially around the agricultural sector.
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