By Chukwuemeka Opara
Eka-Awoke (Ebonyi) Nov.12, 2020 President Muhammadu Buhari has urged youths of Eka-Awoke community in Ikwo Local Government Area of Ebonyi, to protect the solar hybrid project sited in the community.
Buhari represented by the Minister of State for Power, Mr Goddy Jedy-Agba made the urgent call on Thursday while inaugurating the 100kw Solar Hybrid Project constructed in the community under the auspices of the Rural Electrification Project (REA).
The president said that renewable energy solution was what the nation needed to bridge its electricity gap.
He added that the Federal Government would collaborate with relevant stakeholders to create policies that would enhance renewable energy investments.
“The youths of the community should not vandalise the facility but instead take good care of it.
“Vandalising the facility will amount to cutting-off your future; chairman of the council should engage vigilant and able-bodied youths to protect the facility.
“This is the time for men, women and youths to display the well-known Nigerian spirit of innovation and creativity as advantage of access to stable power for business development,” he said.
He said that the federal government through the ministry of power would ensure that Nigeria’s massive renewable energy resources were efficiently utilised to energise communities, schools and businesses across Nigeria.
“I must commend the commitment of the Rural Electrification Agency in the commencement and completion of several off-grid projects across the six geo-political zones of the country,” he said.
Gov. David Umahi, represented by his Deputy, Dr Kelechi Igwe, expressed gratitude to the federal government that two out of 12 hybrid projects across the country, were sited in Ebonyi.
“Clean, renewable energy is the way to go as it will give our people good health, stimulate industrialisation, provide youths opportunity of self employment.
“The facility will provide the youths, opportunity of embarking on massive agricultural ventures as it is a big plus to the community and state,” he said.
Alhaji Salihijo Ahmad, Managing Director of the Rural Electrification Agency, said that it electrifies unserved and underserved communities to catalyse economic growth and improve Nigerians’ quality of life.
“The agency is currently implementing Rural Electrification Fund (REF) Nigeria Electrification Project (NEP) Energising Education Programme (EPP) Grid Extension capital projects among others,” he said.
Mr Theophilus Nweke, Managing Director of Cloud Energy Photoelectric Ltd, the project’s partners said that the project which cost billions of naira, was intended to enhance productivity in all sectors of the community’s life.
Chief Steve Orogwu, Chairman of Ikwo LGA, thanked the federal government for establishing the project in the area and pledged that the people would effectively secure it to serve the intended purposes.