Policy analysts have faulted alleged moves by the Senate to stall the approval of funding for the Energizing Education Programme (EEP). EEP is Nigerian federal universities’ electrification project spearheaded by the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing as captured in the 2018 budget proposal.
It covers a N10bn solar project which aims at providing solar electricity to the 37 federal universities and selected federal university teaching hospitals in the country with a view to rejuvenating the nation’s education system through the supply of uninterrupted power.
Speaking under the aegis of the Association for Public Policy Analysis (APPA), they called on the leadership of the National Assembly to ensure that the solar electrification project gets necessary legislative approvals; stressing that, in the long run, it is not only cost-effective, but also beneficial to the nation at large, if universities use solar electricity for their activities.
Recall that the Senate Committee on Power, Steel Development and Metallurgy led by Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe criticised the project during the Power Ministry’s budget defense last week; saying, “there is a better way to deploy the funds if the Rural Electrification Agency (REA) had N10 billion to ‘play round’ with.”
APPA’s National President, Princewill Okorie told newsmen at rally on Thursday in Abuja that such a project would enhance learning in the schools.
“We appreciate the ability of solar electricity to provide regular uninterrupted power supply in university environment which shall enhance illumination, academic and progressive engagements, while dispelling darkness which promote nefarious activities on campus.
“It is our duty as Nigerians to advocate for policies that will enhance the well-being of Nigerians by drawing attention of the National Assembly members to issues that will be favourable and patriotic without bias or personal interest.
“Audit of electricity provision cost in the bnations’s universities will show that the amount of money spent on purchase of diesel, fuel, and generators in a year will be close to N10bn being proposed by the Federal Ministry of Power for solar energy for the 37 universities in the 2018 federal budget.
“Consequent upon the above, we request that the most revered House of Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria should resolve whatever ambiguities associated the budget and approve the funding of Energizing Education Programme which has the proposed provision of solar energy in 37 universities in the country for the benfit of Nigerian youths and students.”