Bank of Industry, BoI, has commissioned a micro-grid solar system in Bisanti, a remote community in Niger State, as part of efforts to encourage small scale enterprises in the country.
Speaking during the commissioning of the project, BoI Managing Director, Mr. Rasheed Olaoluwa, stated that the project would not only help to drive entrepreneurship and boost economic activities in the community, it would also help to improve the quality of lives of the locals .
Olaoluwa said the 24KW micro-grid solar electrification system, will be replicated in six communities in a pilot phase across the federation, adding that the project was part of the bank’s Solar Energy Partnership with the United Nations Development Programme, UNDP.
He listed other off-grid communities slated by the development finance institution to benefit from the rural electrification programme include: Idi-Ita/Onibambu, Ile-Ife LGA, in Osun State, Ogbekpen, Ikpoba in Okha LGA, Edo State, Kolwa Kaltunga LGA, in Gombe State, Onono, Anambra West LGA, in Anambra State and Carwa/Cakum, Markarfi LGA, in Kano State.
GVE Projects Limited, the project developer, implemented a 6KW PV solar rural micro-grid at Egbeke, Rivers State in 2013 and is said to be currently implementing a 18KW solar micro-grid solution in the same location.
He also said that by eliminating the use of kerosene lanterns, oil lamps and other dangerous and unhealthy sources of power generation, the lives of the community members would be preserved while also protecting the environment.
The managing director said the current electricity situation in the country could not adequately support the growth of MSMEs in the nation, adding that the time had come to deploy the abundant renewable energy sources that abound in the country for the nation’s economic development.
On the significance of the project to the community, the BoI boss added, “Each home will have sufficient solar electricity to power three(3) LED light bulbs, 1 electric fan, 1 radio/Tav set and of course, mobile phone charging.
According to him, “These are the basic energy needs of an average rural family. What we have initiated is a commercially sound model for delivering power to Nigerian rural homes at affordable rates, to provide a long-term alternative to the problematic national grid.
While advocating for the diversification of the nation’s energy sources, Olaoluwa explained that the central power generation, transmission and distribution system being operated in Nigeria scold no longer deliver competitive, cheap and reliable electricity to remote customers through the national grid.
“Rather than wait in vain for the national grid to reach these areas,” he further noted, “we should explore the golden opportunity that renewable energy presents for the provision of clean, affordable and sustainable energy for our rural communities.”
In his remarks, the District Head of Bisanti Community, Alhaji Mustapha Babadoku, who respire seated His Royal Highness Etsu Nupe, commended the development finance institution for considering his community for the project.
Babadoku assured that the facility put in their domain are well be protected towards ensuring that it serve it purposed.

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