…commissions Solar Power in Karu Primary Health Centre
By Etuka Sunday
The Minister of State for Power, Mr Goddy Jedy-Agba has restated the Federal Government’s commitment to Bridging Electricity Gap in the rural communities.
Jedy-Agba spoke Tuesday at the Commissioning of the First 12KWP Volsus Solar For Health (VSFH) Mini-grid with 50KWH Battery Bank, and unveiling of the Sustainable Energy Africa Magazine, at Karu Primary Health Centre, Abuja.
Speaking in his Keynote Address, he said, the present Government was promoting a holistic development agenda and would continue to provide power for under-served communities in Nigeria which would encourage people who live outside the towns and cities to engage in small businesses and preserve farm produce by processing them.
The Minister said, “to emphasize the focus Government is given to electrifying rural communities, there are plans under the 2.3 trillion naira fund for the Economic Sustainability Plan (ESP) being coordinated by the Office of the Vice President, to provide Solar Home Systems (SHS) to five million homes across un-served rural communities in Nigeria. Businesses will grow up if the rural dwellers have light.
“This administration is also promoting the mini grid regulation made by the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC). For instance, through the Rural Electrification Agency (REA), several mini-grid projects have been commissioned and more are underway,” he said.
Jedy-Agba noted that the “Primary Health Centres (PHCs) are critical facilities in rural communities as they are the first sign of government’s effort in providing sustainable health to its people.
“However over the years, adequate power supply to them has been one of the challenges the facilities have faced across the states. I was informed that at a time, this Karu primary health centre had to suspend night shift because of the epileptic power supply and the challenges that come with that.
“I believe that this is now a thing of the past with the commissioning of this first VSFH 12 kilowatt power (KWP) solar mini-grid with 58 kilowatt hour (KWH) battery bank.
“The project also comes with solar power refrigerators and cooling systems to ensure that vaccines are well preserved for effective routine immunization, and improved working conditions for the health officials in this health centre.
“Volsus Energy Limited further deemed it fit to publish a magazine, ‘Sustainable Energy Africa’, dedicated to providing information specifically on the progress the public sector, and the private sector is making on the renewable energy front in Nigeria in particular, and the continent, in general.
“The magazine will not only provide information about the various renewables like solar, wind, biomass and small hydropower plants, it will also provide investment guides for potential decision making for the deployment of renewable energy towards accelerating access to electricity while promoting access to energy across Africa.
“We are working to ensure there is no hindrance in ensuring that un-served and underserved communities continue to enjoy basic amenities such as stable power in Nigeria. This is what this government of President Muhammadu Buhari will be known for by posterity,” he said.
Earlier, the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Volsus Energy Limited, Engr. Tomiwa Bayo-Ojo in his Welcome Address said, “the mini grid is now providing 24 hour electricity to the wards, the labour room, the laboratory, and the entire building. There is also the component for a refrigerator to improve the storage process of vaccines for routine immunization at the centre.
“We have also provided fans and cooling systems to improve the productivity and safety of the healthcare workers at this very delicate time.
“This pilot mini grid project is fully funded by Volsus Energy Limited with technical and advisory support from the Office of the Minister of State for Power.
“Along with this project, the Honourable Minister of State will be unveiling the SUSTAINABLE ENERGY AFRICA magazine. This is a publication of Volsus Energy Limited, aimed at promoting wider reach of information on the evolution of the renewable energy sub-sector of the power sector in Nigeria and across Africa.
“The publication in subsequent editions will be showcasing crucial investment guides on solar energy and other renewable energy sources.
It will also feature,” he said.