The Rural Electrification Agency (REA) and Oando Clean Energy Limited (OCEL) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for sustainable renewable energy access across the country.
REA in a statement said the agreement was signed at the Corporate Headquarters of the Agency in Abuja.
It said the aim was to also “boost collaboration between the private sector and government agencies toward the deployment of sustainable renewable energy access across the country”.
The signing, according to the agency was a result of the success of the recently held SPN investor matchmaking event.
REA said, as it continues to play a key role in the nation’s off-grid, renewable energy space, it has maintained a strong history of drawing in private sector investment, facilitating inter-sectorial collaboration, and ultimately, aiding the implementation and delivery of fit-for-purpose off-grid solutions nationwide.
It said, also as a key player in the energy space, the Oando brand activated its clean energy subsidiary, Oando Clean Energy Limited (OCEL) in 2021.
Speaking at the MoU signing, the Managing Director/CEO of the Rural Electrification Agency, Engr. Ahmad Salihijo Ahmad explained that one of the best ways to mitigate the effects of subsidy removal in Nigeria is through the exploitation of opportunities to optimize the critical role of renewable energy.
He further expressed his delight about the REA – Oando partnership, saying that “it will bring about mutually beneficial collaboration, knowledge exchange and experiences all targeted at achieving the common goal of optimizing renewable energy.
Ahmad added that “the REA has a history of ensuring whatever kind of financing is available to the REA, there are programs and initiatives the REA implements that can be used to deliver impact across the nation”.
While commending the REA for its approach to understanding and leveraging the role of the private sector players to deliver on the task of sustainable energy access across the country, the President and CEO of Oando Clean Energy Limited, Dr. Alex Irune stated that “Oando is keen on renewable energy and are excited for this opportunity to create value that the country needs.
He expressed his confidence in the collaboration with REA while explaining that “what the REA has effectively done is to take the bull by the horn and derisk investment opportunities. I wouldn’t be signing this MoU today if there wasn’t an enabling environment provided by the REA.
“I commend the REA on its approaches, programs, and achievements over the years. These approaches are sustainable”.
The Executive Director, Technical Services at the REA, Engr. Barka Sajou while explaining the Agency’s shift in paradigm on the delivery of fit-for-purpose electrification projects explained that “delivering on sustainable energy access across the nation must go beyond just connections and rather serve as an enabler of growth in communities, while targeting electrification projects to people’s sources of livelihood”.
The Head of the Solar Power Naija Programme, Barbara Izilien explained that the Agency continues to deepen private sector engagements, targeted at drawing in funding, sustainably while expanding access across the nation.
Barbara stated that “the intention for this collaboration is to encourage private sector investment to deploy sustainable renewable energy projects across the country.
“We are trying to grow the funding of the Solar Power Naija and this MoU signing will support the expansion targets of the REA in providing energy access to communities.”
“The repositioned REA has, over the years, strengthened ties with key stakeholders in the private sector and the development space. Beyond that, the Agency has realigned itself with the state governments through the Nigeria Governors Forum.
“In line with the mandate of the REA, the state governments continue to play a pivotal role in the Agency’s consistent deployment of people-centered electrification projects”, he said
The REA – Oando collaboration marks the beginning of another timely and strategic partnership targeted at exploring new approaches to clean energy development for socio-economic impact in post-subsidy Nigeria.