Following the success of the Rural Electrification Agency (REA) recently hosted investor matchmaking event called Solar Power Naija (SPN), the REA announced on Wednesday, in a statement, that it has inked an agreement with Oando Clean Energy Limited (OCEL) to increase the availability of renewable energy sources throughout Nigeria. It was revealed that the signing of the MoU intends to improve collaboration between the private sector and government agencies towards the deployment of sustainable renewable energy access nationally.
According to the agency, it has a long history of attracting private sector investments, fostering inter-sectoral collaboration, and assisting the widespread adoption and delivery of off-grid solutions that are both effective and efficient. In 2021, it activated its clean energy subsidiary, Oando Clean Energy Limited (OCEL), the report said, making the Oando brand a major player in the energy industry. According to the report, the new REA-Oando partnership is a timely and strategic initiative to investigate alternative methods of advancing the development of clean energy for societal and economic benefit in Nigeria’s post-subsidy era.
Impact of subsidy removal will be alleviated through renewable energy.
At the signing of the MoU, Ahmad Salihijo, Managing Director/CEO of the Rural Electrification Agency, highlighted that capitalising on possibilities to optimise the essential role of renewable energy is one of the best methods to minimise the impact of subsidy removal in Nigeria. Collaboration, exchange of information, and the sharing of experiences would all help towards the common aim of optimising renewable energy, he said. The REA has a track record of implementing activities and initiatives that can have a national impact with whatever resources are at its disposal.
Alex Irune, President and CEO of Oando Clean Energy Limited, praised the REA for its strategy for understanding and taking advantage of the role of private sector players in executing the objective of sustainable energy accessibility in the country. He also expressed excitement about the chance to create value that the country needs through Oando’s focus on renewable energy. If the REA hadn’t established an atmosphere conducive to cooperation, they wouldn’t be signing this MoU today. He praised the REA’s methods, programmes, and results over the years. Mr. Irune stated that these methods are viable long-term options.
It will serve as a catalyst for growth within communities.
Barka Sajou, Executive Director of Technical Services for the REA, explains the shift in perspective that the agency is implementing towards the execution of fit-for-purpose electrification initiatives. He noted that the provision of sustainable energy access across the nation as a whole must involve more than only making connections; instead, it must serve as a catalyst for expansion within communities. In addition to this, it should direct electrification initiatives towards the many sources of livelihood that individuals have.
Also, Barbara Izilien, who heads the Solar Power Naija Programme, said that the agency is continuing to strengthen its private-sector interactions in an effort to attract sustainable funding while also increasing access across the country. The goal of this partnership is to increase the number of renewable energy projects across the country that receive funding from the private sector. This MoU signing will help the growth targets of the REA to offer energy access to communities, and they are working to increase funding for Solar Power Naija as part of these efforts.
State government plays a crucial role in the initiative.
Through the years, the modified REA has been able to strengthen its connections with key stakeholders in the development area and the private sector. In addition to this, the agency has repositioned itself with the governments of the states in Nigeria by means of the Nigeria governors forum. According to the statement, in keeping with the mandate of the REA, the state continues to play a crucial role in the continuous deployment of people-centred electrification initiatives by the agency.