Energising Rural Communities Through Accelerated NEP Initiative

Rural and peri-urban populations in Nigeria continue to suffer unreliable and expensive energy supply. According to the World Bank, the electricity access rate in Nigeria stood at 55.4 per cent in 2020 with a big gap between urban and rural areas.

Although several power reforms and projects have been carried out by the country leadership, no tangible long-lasting solution has been proffered.

However, with the sustenance of electricity deployment through the efforts of Rural Electrification Agency (REA), most communities in the country are beginning to enjoy electricity and socio-economic activities are now springing up in those communities so far benefited in the country wide project.

Recently, in Shimankar (a rural community in Shendam Local Government Area of Plateau State, Nigeria), REA commissioned a 234kWp solar hybrid mini-grid which is reported to be one of the largest capacity mini-grid deployed by the agency to power a previously unserved community in Nigeria. Ahmad said, “We have since gone ahead to deliver 12 solar hybrid mini-grids and over 19, 000 solar home systems under the REF. The SHS technology is gaining popularity as a compact energy solution, given the high rate of success in boosting the number of connections in the past year.

The World Bank Director expressed satisfaction during her remarks, and said that the World Bank is expanding its support for mini-grids in Nigeria because it believes that the country is leading the world in this area.