Expert urges Buhari to dedicate second term to renewable energy
An energy expert, Mr Bolade Soremekun, has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to invest more in renewable energy in the next four years to develop rural electrification and improve urban electrification.
According to him, the Buhari-led administration also need to provide incentives for urban dwellers to install solar systems.
“Incentives should be given to renewable energy manufacturers and these incentives should be subsidised.
“There is also the need to consider tax rebates,” he said.
Soremekun, who is the Chairman of RUBITEC SOLAR, urged government to compel power distribution companies to enforce metering and enforce strict sanction on defaulters.
“Government should put less emphasis on discos and invest more on alternative energy, including solar, solar hybrid and gas.
“ Provide incentives for on-grid solar and remove bottlenecks in power distribution.
“Some policies are good, but execution is poor and slow.
“The Discos need to be shaken up. No estimated billing. All customers must be metered with pre-paid meters.
“Renewable Energy requires zero duty, tax incentives, pioneer status, training and capacity for youths in technicians and engineers,” he said.
Soremekun, however, commended the government for introducing the Renewable Energy Policy (REP), calling for its effective implementation.
He described the policy as a critical blueprint for the national search for permanent solutions to the country’s lingering energy crisis.
Soremekun also stressed the need for the policy to be backed by law in order to sustain the contribution of clean energy to the energy mix and attract investors to the sector.
“The REP document, no doubt, will serve as a blueprint for sustainable supply and utilisation of renewable energy sources within the economy for both on-grid and off-grid solutions.
“The document also advances an Energy Efficiency Policy (EEP) which will reduce inefficient consumption, thereby providing greater access to electricity consumers,” he said.
Soremekun, however, expressed concern over the deficiency in the country’s energy infrastructure over the years, despite being the most populated and largest economy in Africa.
He advised the government to encourage private sector investments in renewable energy, using feed-in tariffs as obtainable in other climes.
The energy expert also advised the Nigeria Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) to provide a regulatory framework for off-grid power supply solutions.
NNN reports that high import tariffs on renewable energy facilities and high bank credit are major obstacles to investment in the sector.
Soremekun, therefore, urged the Nigeria Customs Service to implement relevant aspects of the REP, especially the provision on zero import duty for renewable energy technologies.(NNN)
Edited by Kamal Tayo Oropo/Wale Ojetimi