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Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, yesterday, flagged off the distribution of 20,000 solar powered lighting systems for rural communities.
Performing the flag-off at Wuna village, a rural community in Gwagwalada, a suburb of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, Osinbajo said it had become imperative to provide alternative power sources that would be off the national grip to power the rural communities in the country, noting that it was not possible to connect every village and community to the national grip.
He said the realization of the project was sequel to an idea he shared with President Muhammadu Buhari in 2015 on how to better the lots of the rural dwellers.
He remarked that an estimated 70 million households in Nigerian were yet to be connected to the national grid, saying the programme would be replicated across the federation. He said: “In September 2015, President Buhari spoke to me about what we could do to accelerate the electrification in the rural areas.
We had in mind different projects that we could do to bring electricity to many of our rural communities and villages. He was particularly concerned as we spoke about farming and also education in the rural areas.
“Renewable energy, especially solar power, seemed to be the one that will be cost effective and that we could deploy very quickly all over the country. Once we took that decision, we came across Azuri. We expect that this will be replicated all over Nigeria.”