By Ogaga Ariemu
Rural Electrification Agency(REA), has signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the National Fadama Development Project (NFDP) to collaborate on planning, implementation of electrification programmes targeted at agriculture, land, water resources.
This was disclosed in a statement to Nigerian NewsDirect Newspaper on Thursday.
The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Rural Electrification Agency, Ahmad Salihijo, said the partnership is instrumental to boost Nigeria’s electricity needs.
“Previously, the Agency proposed a framework to internalize planned electrification programmes into the national budgeting process, highlighting funding sources and partnerships, and designing an integrated approach to ensure that the ERGP/ESP targets are fulfilled.
“Sequel to the approval and inclusion in the year 2022 budget, the Agency intends to implement the framework to improve livelihoods, specifically in rural communities, through programmes targeted at providing electricity for productive use in healthcare centres, markets, schools, agriculture, etc.
“The framework, underpinned by the MoU between both parties, is expected to be implemented in a sustainable and impactful manner, while also addressing one of the agency’s strategic objectives – to promote electricity consumption for ‘productive use’ in the country.
“The MoU will mutually benefit both the REA and FADAMA. Both parties are keen to unlock the economic potential in agrarian communities, through the provision of electricity solutions for agro-processing and irrigation schemes,” he said.
Similarly, Executive Director, Technical Services, Rural Electrification Agency, Barka Sajou said, “The MoU will ensure timely communication and cooperation during the implementation stage of the programme, including support (where applicable) in conducting field surveys, monitoring/supervision and impact assessments.
“Subsequently, this agro-energy programme, as well as other proposed programmes under the framework, will be implemented to demonstrate opportunities for the private sector. And based on the lessons learned, viable agriculture-energy solutions and business models can be adopted and scaled commercially.”
Meanwhile, representatives of National Fadama Development Project (NFDP) said, “We wish to re-affirm our commitment both from the National and State FADAMA offices across the country to ensure the success of this partnership for the sustenance of the livelihood of Nigeria farmers, enhance food security, increase Farmer’s income, as well as contribute to mitigating climate change due to Green House Emission.”
The MoU is also expected to consider the agency’s recently-launched Energising Agricultural Programme (EAP). The EAP is a three-year initiative with the Global Energy Alliance for People and Planet (GEAPP), with funding from the Rockefeller Foundation that aims to stimulate the use of mini-grid electricity in agricultural productive uses. These ‘Agro-Energy’ programmes are intended to provide electricity for productive use and unlock the economic potential/activities in rural and agrarian communities alike.
The Agency has communicated and cooperated with stakeholders during the pre-implementation stage, including support in conducting desktop and field surveys to identify viable sites. The other stakeholders include the At-Risk Children Programme (ARC-P) and National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons (NCFRMI).