The Energy Commission of Nigeria (ECN) in collaboration with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) have executed solar projects in Hong Local government area of Adamawa State.
This is a renewed effort towards the rehabilitation of people most affected by insurgency.
Over 13,065 people in 12 communities benefited from the project, which utilizes solar energy resources for electricity generation to meet the need for water supply, street lightings, improved health care services, lighting and mobile phone charging devices.
The projects impacted on the livelihoods of people in villages like Fa’a Gaya, Gaya Silkami, Garaha Mijili, Dilwachira, Gashala Mamud, Mutuku, Shashua, Garaha Lari, Garaha Banga, Kubutaf, Pella and Kwakwa, who have started rebuilding their once ravaged communities.
An elated member of a benefiting community, Mr. Phanuel Mohammed, said that there was tremendous increase in number of patients coming for treatment in the clinic after the projects were commissioned.
According to him, the only clinic, providing primary healthcare services, was affected by the insurgency before the installation of the solar-powered vaccine storage refrigerator and electrification of the entire clinic with solar PV by ECN/UNDP.
In his words, “Our vaccines and drugs are now preserved and people would no more go to council headquarters for medical attention.”
A youth leader, Mr. Solomon Stephen expressed happiness over the provision of water and streetlights in most of the affected communities, which were hitherto deserted.
Speaking on behalf of womenfolk, Nachafiya Mallam described the portable solar lanterns with handset charging device as very good, saying they would also need solar grinding machines and mosquito net.
For the administrator, Kulinyi Development Area, Mr. Davidson Jeruro, the commissioning of the amenities had led to the return of about 75 percent of the displaced people.
On his part, a Director in ECN, Okon Ekpenyong, said baseline study was carried out before embarking on the projects in the 12 benefiting villages.
He said the invasion of many communities by insurgents in North East led to poor access to clean energy in the most affected areas, hence the need for such amenities, like potable water supply and health care services for people who have started returning home.
Ekpenyong said the solar projects were initiated to improve access to clean and renewable energy conversion devices like open-to-sun drying method, dry-wood or kerosene lanterns and traditional three- stone woodstove for cooking, lighting and heating energy needs.
He added, “We are trying to build local capacity in the project management and systems maintenance for the sustainability of the solar projects in the affected communities.”