By ABAH ADAH, Abuja
The federal government has reiterated that it’s Energising Education Programme (EEP) is aimed at affording 37 federal universities and University Teaching Hospitals across the the 6 geopolitical zones of the country access to stable and uninterrupted power that will enhance learning and boost economic activities within and around those institutions.
A statement issued by the Rural Electrification Agency who is the custodian of the programme and made available to LEADERSHIP at the Weekend highlighted the objectives of the programme to include but not limited to providing off-grid captive power plants for 37 federal universities and 7 university teaching hospitals, across the six (6) geopolitical zones;
Providing street lights to ensure safety for students, staff and visitors of the institutions;
Rehabilitation, strengthening and extending the existing distribution networks; developing and operating training centres to train and certify students in courses related to renewable energy; distributing power to surrounding communities in the second tier of each phase as a strategy for rural electrification, subsequently resulting in an increase of economic activity within those communities and general well being.
“EEP is one of the programmes designed to implement the energy access and sufficiency action point of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (EGRP) and it is also incorporated into the Federal Executive Council (FEC) approved Power Sector Reform Programme (PSRP), as a vital component of the PSRP.
“The decision to seek a sustainable solution to this problem was also informed by the need to alleviate the burden of enormous costs borne by the Federal Universities in self-power generation which includes but is not limited to the high capital expenditure on diesel run generators and the need to ensure Nigeria adheres to her obligations under the Paris Agreement, through the promotion of renewable and cleaner energy technology, towards reduction of hazardous emissions,” the statement noted.
Explaining what informed the initiative, the statement noted that “Access to uninterrupted power supply in Federal Universities and University Teaching hospitals in Nigeria has been cited as a major challenge and barrier to effective learning, institutional operations and student residency. Considering the role of education in economic growth and socio-economic development in Nigeria, the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing resolved to embark on viable projects that will ensure the availability of reliable, sustainable and affordable power to our tertiary institutions. Hence the conception of the ‘Energising Education Programme’ (EEP).