Promise Kept As FG Flags-off CNG Bus Initiative

The Federal Government under the leadership of President Bola Tinubu has fulfilled part of its promise to Nigerians with the launch of the compressed natural gas (CNG) Bus Conversion Initiative yesterday at the State House.

As a push for the successful implementation of the initiative cum massive rollout of the CNG buses, the federal government also waived Value Added Tax (VAT) on the CNG bus purchases.

The initiative was designed to ease the current high transportation cost and the hardship occasioned by the removal of fuel subsidy in the country.

- Advertisement -

After the removal of the subsidy, President Tinubu disclosed that his administration had made provision to invest N100 billion between now and 2024 to acquire and roll out 3,000 units of 20-seater CNG fuelled buses across the states and local governments of the federation.

In fulfillment of that promise, the federal government has ordered 55,000 conversion kits as part of the immediate palliative.

Speaking shortly after the flag-off of the initiative by the Chief of Staff to the President, Femi Gbajabiamila, the Chairman, Steering Committee of the Presidential Compressed Natural Gas Initiative (PCNGI), Zacch Adedeji, said,
 plans are on for the government to establish multiple conversion centres across the country in the next two weeks.
Adedeji, who doubles as the Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), disclosed that the project would generate employment opportunities.
The Project Director, PCNGI,  Micheal Oluwagbemi, said, “in the next few weeks, starting from tomorrow (Saturday) in Lagos, the PCNGI will establish the roll out of more conversion centers to enable 55,000 conversions in the next 6 months under the palliative program.”
Oluwagbemi, said, “in addition to this, over 11,500 CNG fueled vehicles will be rolled out by partnership with private sector, cooperative, state and union operated mass transit operators in the same period.”

He said, the state governments have already indicated investment interest in the CNG buses, stating that Rivers state government has already acquired some to ease the transportation challenges of the state.

“The current cost of conversion varies from the model and type of vehicle but the President has ensured that as part of PCNGI, we will look into that cost by helping and incentivising Nigerians,” Oluwagbemi added.

Currently, there are less than fifty standard CNG plants available for refilling purposes in Nigeria. The government targets to establish about 2,000 CNG filling stations across the country, against the over 9, 000 fuel stations.

Presently, NIPCO Gas operates 14 CNG
stations in Edo, Kogi, Delta, Ogun state, and Abuja, while others are under various stages of construction and approval.

It should also be noted that one of Africa’s largest CNG companies, Power Gas, currently operates five CNG plants in Nigeria.

However, in August this year, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited announced a strategic partnership with NIPCO Gas Limited to develop CNG stations across the country.

The NNPCL said, the partnership was in addition to the phased deployment of 56 CNG stations planned by NNPC Retail across the country.

It said, the landmark collaboration aims to expand the CNG infrastructure, improve access to CNG, and accelerate the adoption of cheaper and cleaner alternative fuel for buses, cars, and Keke NAPEP, which will significantly reduce the cost of transportation and engender sustainable national economic growth.

Under the NNPC-NIPCO strategic partnership, 35 state-of-the-art CNG stations would be constructed nationwide, including three (3) Mother stations.

NNPCL said, once fully operational, the stations can service over 200,000 vehicles daily, thereby significantly reducing carbon emissions and associated impact on climate.

It said the project would be rolled out in phases. The first phase, comprising 21 CNG stations, will support intra-city transportation and be ready by the first quarter of 2024; While the second phase, comprising 35 CNG stations, will support inter-city transformation and will be ready by the first quarter of 2025.

To deepen and sustain the initiative, NNPC Ltd., said, it has “floated NNPC Prime LNG Limited for domestic LNG production and supply. NNPC is also collaborating with Miju Auto Gas, a leading CNG kit Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) based in India, to set up training and conversion centres to facilitate in-country conversion of vehicles from petrol to CNG.

Meanwhile, about two CNG buses were handed over to the state house at the ceremony.

The Permanent Secretary, State House,
Olusesan Adebiyi, who received the buses said, they would enhance staff efficiency and punctuality at work.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Back to top button