Efforts to address the training needs in the power sector has received a boost as the Federal Government, yesterday, commissioned a N1.62 billion state-of-the-art electrical laboratory and demonstration centre at the Kainji regional training centre of the National Power Training Institute of Nigeria (NAPTIN).
The hi-tech engineering laboratory, which offers a range of suitable training systems, is intended to provide practical and hands-on understanding and experience on electrical power system during training across the generation, transmission and distribution sub-sectors of the electricity production chain.
The Minister of State for Power, Darius Ishaku, who commissioned the project, expressed optimism that the laboratory would further strengthen the capacity of the committed power sector workers who work day and night to ensure that the nation has light, against all odds.
While noting that it was unfortunate that most of the power stations had never received any overhaul since their construction even as there had been no structured trainings for the workers since 1989, Ishaku commended them for their ability to have kept the lights on.
“This training is sure to replace the few structurally trained professionals that are left in the sector. This project is timely because the few remaining trained professional engineers would now have a chance to pass on the knowledge before they go on retirement,” Ishaku said, while pledging government’s continued support to fund training requirements in the sector.
In his remarks, the Director- General of NAPTIN, Mr. Reuben Okeke, stated that the laboratory was procured and installed by a German company at a cost of £772,000, (N1.62 billion), adding that apart from the installation, five NAPTIN engineers have also been trained at the contractors site in Germany on the operation of the equipment.
According to Okeke, “In electricity production and supply chain, three key inputs are of utmost importance, these are physical infrastructure, fuel and skilled personnel.