Politics and Society
Solar energy: Dream comes true for six Nigerian rural communities
In six rural communities in Nigeria, residents were for the first time connected to electricity following the launch of six solar minigrids. This development, a partnership between Husk Power Systems, the World Bank and the Nigerian government has brought change to the communities.
Residents of Doma and Lafia Local Government Areas (LGAs) in Nasarawa State, Nigeria, were for the first time connected to electricity following the launch of six solar minigrids by Husk Power Systems, the rural clean energy services leader in Africa and Asia.
The solar minigrids were launched under the Nigerian Electrification Projects (NEP), which is implemented by the Rural Electrification Agency and funded by the World Bank and the African Development Bank.
According to Husk Power Systems, the newly launched minigrids will provide clean, reliable, and affordable electricity to about 5,000 households and 500 businesses in Doma and Lafia. The six communities accessing electricity for the first time are Rukubi, Idadu and Igbabo in Doma LGA, and Kiguna, Akura, and Gidan Buba in Lafia LGA.
Chief Dan Suleiman of Rukubi community told TIA “This is the first time we will see electricity in our locality. Everybody was happy, what we don’t dream God brought it to us. Before, we didn’t know what was light, but now we know. Some are used to AC and fan, and those who live in the city can now enjoy.”
One of the challenges however is the high electricity tariff the community has to deal with. As first-time users of electricity, adjusting to the tariff presents a unique challenge.
“We pray for better living and we are the same with the city. It is 24 hours light,” said another resident who spoke to TIA.
Manoj Sinha, Husk co-founder and CEO, said that “Nigeria’s leadership in rural electrification and making minigrids a centerpiece of national energy strategy is a global best practice. Husk Power is proud to be contributing to the government’s vision of public-private partnership to provide clean, quality, reliable electricity that powers economic opportunity for small businesses and households across the country.”
Nigeria’s infamous electricity issues have been the bane of jokes and banter. In February 2021, the World Bank approved $500 million to support the country’s electricity sector. According to the World Bank, 43% of Nigerians representing 85 million Nigerians, don’t have access to electricity grid, making Nigeria “the country with the largest electricity deficit in the world.”
The governor of Nasarawa State, Eng. Abdullahi Sule who was present at the launch said, “The completion of six minigrids by Husk Power Systems in Nasarawa State is an important step in scaling rural electrification and achieving energy access for all Nigerians.” Governor Sule was proud of the collaboration between Nasarawa State, Husk Power, and the Federal Government through the Rural Electrification Agency.