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AfDB earmarked $200 million to Enhance Rural Electrification in Nigeria

AfDB earmarked $200 million to Enhance Rural Electrification in Nigeria

The Minister of State, Power, Goddy Jedy-Agba, OFR, has described electricity as the bedrock of sustainable socio-economic national development, saying no nation’s economy would make meaningful headway without the support of an efficient power sector.

He made this disclosure Monday, in Abuja when he had in audience the Acting Vice President, Power, Energy, Climate and Green Growth Complex of the African Development Bank (AfDB), Wale Shonibare who led a high – powered delegation of the bank on a courtesy visit to the Ministry.

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Jedy-Agba said it is for these reasons that the President Mohammadu Buhari led Administration had taken some bold initiatives and interventions at improving power supply in the country, and would welcome with open arms, supports from development partners.

He stated that the Federal Government was willing to do more in partnering with the African Development Bank to enhance further growth in the sector and provide electricity to Nigerians.

The Minister said the Federal Government is appreciative of AfDB’s contributions so far in the sector and assured the team that any money given to the sector would be judiciously utilized and accounted for. “AfDB had been investing in the sector and they planned to invest more by increasing their funding in the development of power in the country”, he said.

Earlier, the leader of the delegation and Acting Vice President Power, Energy, Climate and Green Growth Complex of the bank, Wale Shonibare while briefing the Minister on the purpose of the visit said “AfDB is very active in the Nigerian power sector and we are ready to do more. The Board has approved $200 million to the sector through the Rural Electrification Agency (REA), to roll out Mini- Grids. We are also involved in Energizing Education, a programme under which we are dedicating power systems to eight Federal Universities”.

Shonibare, who is also the Director, Energy and Installation in the bank, stated that the bank was also very involved in the transmission sector of the country as it had a $410 million to support the Nigerian Transmission Expansion Project (NTEP) to  provide 330KV transmission lines, saying $200 million has already been approved by AfDB Board for phase one of the project, which seeks to rehabilitate and upgrade the nation’s power lines and improve distribution and supply as well as the provision of sub-stations.

“I understand that the agreement was signed last week and we expect the project to progress. We are involved in the Jigawa power project, we have approved a grant of one million dollars to support the feasibility study for phase one and the studies are almost completed”, he said.

“We need to see how we can assist you (Nigeria) more and get your priority areas to move the sector forward,’ he added.

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