How can we have stable electricity to drive our economic goals? This was the main question tackled by a group of experts and other stakeholders on Wednesday in Lagos.
Big businesses, households and manufacturers require stable electricity to drive higher production and generate employment. These, among others, are why the Lagos State Government organised a virtual forum to chart a path for the future in the sector.
Speaking at the virtual Lagos State Electricity Policy Stakeholder Consultative Forum, the Commissioner for Energy and Mineral Resources, Mr. Olalere Odusote, said a stable power supply would, no doubt, drive socio-economic development in Lagos.
It is all in pursuit of “A Greater Lagos” as canvassed by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s T.H.E.M.E.S Agenda – the six-pillar development plan for Lagos.
Odusote pointed out that the forum was convened in furtherance of the State Government’s resolve to provide power that will drive commerce and industry, just as he reaffirmed that the 30-year development plan for the attainment of universal access to electricity will be carefully executed.
In a paper presented at the event, the consultant on the project and Managing Director of Excredite Consulting Limited, Mr. Eyo Ekpo, noted that adequate electricity supply is essential to ensure that all users have energy resources to meet their needs.
“Electricity reliability for Lagos State means supply that is available to any customer in the State Electricity Market in the desired quality as and when needed,” he said.
While highlighting the long journey of Lagos State towards achieving stable electricity, Ekpo suggested that reliable electricity supply should include deploying alternative sources of power.
He challenged Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources, in collaboration with the Lagos State Ministry of Environment and Water Resources, Ministry of Finance and Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency, LASEPA, to work out rules aimed at rapidly shifting residential property users of electricity to solar energy.
Suggesting that the proposed new electricity policy should encourage owners of generating sets over 100KVA to switch to cleaner fuels, the Consultant advocated that the State Government should work with financial services and gas suppliers to develop a gas supply market.
Speaking on strategies that would guarantee sustainable power supply, the consultant emphasised the need for Lagos to institutionalise and execute the State’s Integrated Resource Plan.
He said: “Government should also support improvement in infrastructure to drive wider access to reliable power supply, reduce cost of living and ease of doing business in Lagos.”
“Additionally, there’s need to secure stakeholders’ buy-in to support electricity market development aspirations by focusing on attaining short and medium-term electricity goals”, Ekpo said.