Ekiti signs MoU on 1.15mw power project



APC tasks Fayose on bail-out fund 

EKITI State Government has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with a United Kingdom (UK)-based company, Elemi Energy Limited, for installation and development of a 1.15 megawatts (mw) Solar Photo Voltaic (SPV) Farm in the state through Public Private Partnership (PPP).

The Solar PV Farm is to be built on 14,000 square metres of land belonging to the Broadcasting Service of Ekiti State (BSES), owners of Ekiti Television (EKTV) and Ekiti Radio 91.5FM, with an agreement to provide free 150 kilowatts (kw) to power BSES installations and equipment for 20 years.

Elemi Energy Limited, which will handle the power project through its subsidiary in Nigeria, Elemi Power Solutions Limited, will also sponsor training of five engineering members of staff of BSES in the UK for the operation and management of the 150kw power plant.

The PPP project, which is to cost over N500 million as Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) into Ekiti State, was approved by the state governor, Mr. Ayodele Fayose, in June this year as part of his commitment to rapid infrastructural development in the state.

Meanwhile, the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ekiti State has tasked Governor Fayose to make judicious use of the bailout loans being facilitated by the Federal Government.

The party said the call became imperative against the backdrop of his alleged misapplication of the balance of the N4 billion bond taken by former Governor Adeniyi Adebayo, which Fayose was said to have allegedly diverted in 2004 to other purposes different from the terms of the bond agreement.

Publicity Secretary of the party, Taiwo Olatubosun, said in a statement that Ekiti people would want the governor to spend the loans for salary and other debts owed civil servants and former political office holders.

He said the disbursements and spending of the loans would be monitored to ensure compliance with the terms of borrowing to curb diversion.

He said: “Our concern is premised on the alarms Governor Fayose has been raising on the status of the state’s debts, particularly his condemnation of the Federal Government’s bail-out initiative, which he dismissed as not a bail-out but a statutory allocation.

Special Assistant to the Governor on Public Communications and New Media, who is also the Acting Director-General of the BSES, Lere Olayinka, said the project, when completed, would ease the broadcast stations of the burden of power supply on which over N5 million is expended monthly.

He said the transformer supplying electricity to the station stopped working since May, last year, making the television and radio stations to be running on generator 18 hours daily.

But speaking on behalf of the power firm, Mr. Olofin, who expressed gratitude to Governor Fayose for his prompt approval of the project, said the project would be completed within nine months after flag-off.

He said upon completion, the megawatts would be sold to the Benin Electricity Distribution Company (BEDC) and other interested private individuals and organisations in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital.

Also speaking, the Commissioner for Information, Youths and Sports Development, called on other private investors to come to the state, describing the power project as one that opens the gate for more PPP towards the development of Ekiti State.

He commended the BSES management for initiating the project, which he said, would bring a permanent end to power supply problems in the station.

The party further said: “We urge workers to insist that the loans should be devoted to the payment of their salaries as approved by the lending authorities.

Former political office holders should impress it on the governor to pay their severance allowances and other entitlements as approved in the mandate of the loan scheme. “Knowing the kind of man the governor is in money matters, we hereby put the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) on notice to monitor disbursements and appropriation of the loan cash to ensure that the money does not end up in private pockets.”

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