He said the president charged them to leave no stone unturned in ensuring uninterrupted power supply to Nigerians during his tenure.
Igali spoke in Abuja during the signing ceremony of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with two indigenous investors in the power sector – Messrs. New Horizons Energy Resources and Quaint Global Energy Solutions.
The two firms are interested in renewable projects, especially solar, biomass and thermal plants respectively.
Igali said the recent increase in power supply is not as a result of rain, as being speculated in some quarters, as marginal improvement from our hydro cannot be responsible for this fact, but it is as a result of increase in gas supply to the thermal plants, adding that our Anti-Vandalism Campaign is also yielding positive results.
In a statement endorsed by the Ministry’s Deputy Director (Press), Timothy Oyedeji yesterday, Igali said to sustain this trend, the present administration is determined to look in the direction of renewables, hence more emphasis will be placed on solar energy source.
He reasoned that with clusters of solar plants built across the country, technical losses occasioned by hauling of energy over long distances will be reduced because the renewable source can be deplored effectively. Captive power in embedded manner will also be available to distribution companies (DISCOs) at the distribution levels.
He commended the companies for working with the Federal Government in the development of mini power generation and micro grid, stressing that these efforts will translate to power stability and reliability.
Igali said the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) is working on the critical corridors that would enhance the nation’s transmission capacity, enough to evacuate all energy to be produced that more gas will be available to the thermal plants.
An official of Quaint Global Energy Solutions, Seun Solesi, told the Permanent Secretary that his company is to enjoy a grant of $1.3 million from the Obama Power Africa Initiative’s United States Trade Development Agency to carry out feasibility studies for its 50megawatts (Mw) solar-powered plant in Machiok, Kaura Local Government Area of Kaduna State. He said with foreign partners, the project will start in earnest on 150 hectares of land approved by Governor Nasir el-Rufai.
The representative of New Horizons said when the project come upstream, Nigerians will be recruited and trained in the U.S, while materials for building the plant would be sourced locally.
He said the plan of the company is to build 100Mw solar power plant in Nasarawa State, 300 – 400Mw of biomass in Cross River and 300Mw of thermal in Rivers State.