Some experts in power sector on Wednesday urged the Federal Government to invest more in renewable energy to fill the gap created in energy supply.

They gave the advice at the 2018 Nigeria Energy Forum (NEF) in Lagos with the theme: ‘Accelerating access to sustainable energy for all’.

Mr Tunde Salihu, Chief Executive Officer, Shaybis Nigeria Ltd, said that investors in renewable energy were not getting loan from banks to support their businesses.

According to him, lack of access to bank loan has crippled development of renewable energy in Nigeria.

Salihu said that the demand for renewable energy skills were growing globally, adding that experts in the field needed financial backing to grow the sector.

Salihu urged the government to fund projects in the sector to encourage more participants in the area.

“Renewable energy is a fundamental and growing part of the world’s ongoing energy transforming.

“Governments all over the world are joining the consensus and the use of renewable energy is their prime.

“Nigerian government should also invest more in this energy to bridge the gap in grid energy,” he said.

Mrs Vera Nwanze, the General Manager, Azuri, said that lack of access to electricity hinders development and growth of the country.

The general manager said that 80 million Nigerians in off-grid areas still rely on potentially hazardous sources of lighting.

She said that government should sponsor more solar energy companies to build off-grid energy for rural dwellers.

According to Nwanze, solar energy can help address climate change and increase standard of living of rural dwellers.

She said that solar energy provided clean, renewable and affordable access to power, replaced candles and kerosene.

Mr Houssam Azem, the Chief Executive Officer, Lumos Nigeria, said that 75 million out Nigeria’s 194 million population lacked access to electricity, according to World Bank record.

According to Azem, Nigeria is moving in the right direction to accelerate off-grid solution with more companies involving in renewable energy.

He urged the government to put right policy in place to encourage more private investment in off-grid power solutions.

Also speaking, Mr Funso Adebayo, the National Chairman, Nigerian Institution for Electrical/Electronic Engineers, said Nigeria is number two after India without electricity supply.

Adebayo urged the government to encourage more local engineers in the production of renewable energy.

In his remark, the organiser, Dr Daniel Adeuyi, said the Nigeria Energy Forum, was aimed at exchanging knowledge, building technical capacity and promoting innovation in the energy sector.

Adeuyi said the nation could not industrialize or lift the income of millions of people above the poverty line without access to clean, efficient and affordable energy services. (NAN)

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