Nigeria, USAID Sign N115.2bn Deal For Advancement Of Power Sector 🎊 The Scoper Media

Nigeria and USAID have signed a N115.2 billion MoU to support power sector reforms and promote clean energy sources.

The federal government and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) on Wednesday signed a N115.2 billion Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to support current reforms in the power sector as well as back the country’s push to provide electricity through cleaner sources.

At the event which took place in Abuja, the Minister of Power, Chief Adebayo Adelabu, said the collaboration marked a significant milestone in Nigeria’s journey towards a brighter future powered by reliable and sustainable electricity for all its people.

He expressed the country’s commitment to ensuring transparency, improving market efficiency as well as accelerating the transition to clean energy solutions, explaining that this aligns perfectly with the national goals of achieving net-zero carbon emissions.

By working with US development agencies and leveraging their expertise, Adelabu stated that Nigeria can empower the private sector, strengthen regulations, and unlock the full potential of its power sector.

According to him, this will not only bring light to millions of homes but also unlock economic growth and sustainable development across Nigeria.

“This new N115.2 billion partnership with USAID represents a pivotal step towards overcoming our longstanding challenges in providing reliable and sustainable power to all Nigerians. It strengthens our collaboration and provides crucial resources to tackle the challenges in our power sector,” the minister added.

Stressing that without energy, nothing significant can be achieved, he explained that President Bola Tinubu prioritises the provision of energy to drive development of other sectors.

“Areas that we would want this collaboration to be intensified is the area of legislative support in implementing the newly signed Electricity Act of 2023. By providing this support for implementation at the sub-national level, we have achieved the decentralisation and the liberalisation of the sector, for state governments and private investors to actively participate in the development of the power sector.

“We are also looking at policy advisory in developing what we call a national integrated electricity policy and strategic implementation plan that will also involve a fully documented integrated resource plan, especially as it affects markets and liquidity in the sector.

“We are looking at technical support in our energy transition plan to achieve our net zero targets by 2060 and our targets of 30,000 megawatts of electricity, out of which 30 per cent of this must come from renewable energy by 2030.

“We would like your support in this regard and I believe we are blessed as a country with everything required for us to have electricity. From the endowment of natural gas to very good and effective sunlight, to very good and effective desert and offshore wind, and so many dams across the country,” Adelabu added.

Also speaking, USAID Power Africa Coordinator, Richard Nelson, highlighted the US Government’s initiative to double access to electricity on the continent by the year 2030.

He said the body has been in operation about 11 years and has made significant gains across the continent, helping almost 15,000 megawatts of power projects reach financial flows in 152 different projects as well as leveraging about $26 billion.

Nelson added that the organisation had also helped almost 200 million people across the continent get access to electricity, describing Nigeria as a special place for the USAID.

“This MoU that the USAID will be signing with you represents a very key component of the Power Africa engagement with Nigeria as a whole for the next several years. And we’re excited to be supporting that.

“Nigeria itself, the work that we’ve done, has resulted in almost 5 million connections, which represents upwards of 20-plus million people just over the last five years. We’ve also supported a little over 3,000 megawatts of electricity reaching financial flows. But we look to support more of that over the next few years,” he noted.

In her remarks, Mission director, USAID Nigeria, Melissa Jones, said that through the MoU, the US government intended to intensify and accelerate its partnership with the ministry, Nigeria’s lead power sector policymaking institution.

“We are very excited to sign this MoU and to achieve our shared goals. Under the MoU, USAID intends to launch a new N115 billion programme to support Nigeria’s energy reform and clean energy transition.

“This is because we believe in the leadership here in this ministry and under the minister, and we believe in the people of Nigeria. The power of partnership is real, and the power of partnership between our two governments is needed now more than ever,” she stated.

Earlier, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Mahmuda Mamman, lauded the US for the collaboration, explaining that with the support, certain targets will be met and surpassed.