The forty federal universities in Nigeria are set to start enjoying stable power supply through the Energizing Education Programme Initiative (EEPI) which will be flagged off soon by the federal government.
Speaking during an interactive session with the Vice-Chancellors and Directors of Physical Planning of all the forty Federal Universities in the country last Wednesday, the Education Minister, Mallam Adamu Adamu, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry; Dr. Folashade Yemi- Esan, stated that the programme was initiated in order to provide uninterrupted and dedicated power supply to all the Federal Universities through the utilization of off-grid Independent Power Projects.
Commending the initiative, Dr. Folashade added that this will also be an avenue to train students especially those in the faculty of Engineering on how to utilize various energy sources in their respective departments.
In his reaction, the Minister for Power, Works and Housing, Dr. Babatunde Raji Fashola, represented at the event by the Minister of State for Power, Alhaji Mustapha Baba Shehuri, stated that the programme is aimed at providing reliable power supply which he said will promote economic growth and sustainable development in our Universities.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Power, Damilola Ogunbiyi, in her presentation, highlighted the objectives of providing consistent power supply to these critical and historic educational institutions, adding that their productivity, efficacy and professionalism will be significantly boosted in the areas of research, teaching and learning with a remarkable impact on the quality of graduates from these institutions.
She added that the programme will promote Public-Private-Partnership, as the Public Sector will benefit from private sector investment for the development of public infrastructure, adding that access to uninterrupted power supply can be expected by these Universities within the next 12- 18 months, beginning from December 2017.
Ogunbiyi further added that the timely delivery of these projects will strengthen the Federal Government’s resolve to improve both the power and educational sectors.
Most importantly, Ogunbiyi maintained that the off-grid power plants being planned for varsities are environmentally friendly with little or no carbon emission, adding that this is in line with global climate change standard.