The Bank of Industry(BoI) has commissioned a -24kw micro-grid solar solution in Kolwa, Kaltungo local government of Gombe State. The Kolwa electrification project covers a six km distribution network, and is also capable providing commercial ventures with electricity.
This is even as the executive governor of the state, Ibrahim Dankwambo, has concluded plans with the bank to replicate the project in other nine local governments of the state.
Prior to the installation of the solar power system, the over 250 households in Kolwa village like other remote communities across the country, only ran individual generators. While the BoI/UNDP solar power pilot project is to be installed in six rural communities in the six geo-political zones of the country, the Kolwa project makes it three, having previously been installed in Bisanti, in Katcha local government area of Niger State, and in Onibambu, Ife-north LGA in Osun State.
The three others, namely: Ogbekpen, Ikpoba in Okha LGA, Edo State, Onono, Anambra-west LGA, in Anambra State and Carwa/Cakum, Markarfi LGA, in Kano State are awaiting commissioning.
Speaking during the commissioning of the project in Kolwa, the acting managing director, BoI, Mr Waheed Olagunju, said the N44 million rural electrification project being financed by the bank in conjunction with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), would provide electricity for over 200 homes not connected to the national grid.
He stated that the rural electrification project was conceived by the bank not only to improve living standards of the rural dwellers, but also to boost economic activities in such areas.
According to him, the installation of the 24kw solar power project in Kolwa would give electricity to the over 200 households in the area at the cheapest cost, adding that the bank gave concessionary loan to the project developer, GVE Nigeria Limited, to achieve the feat.
Explaining the metering model, Olagunju said payment would be on a pay-as-you-go basis, with each household provided with a pre-paid meter.