2023: Edo govt to rev up engagements with businesses for quick resolution of their challenges — Uwaibi
…Govt. to seriously engage BEDC, others to make electricity energy available to manufacturers.
By Abdul-Kadir Abdullah
The Managing Director Edo State Investment Promotion Office (ESIPO)-Ease of Doing Business Secretariat, Mr. Kelvin Uwaibi has said that businesses in Edo State will get more electricity and renewable energy to function optimally in the year 2023.
Uwaibi who is also the Secretary to the Edo State Ease of Doing Business Council disclosed this to journalists in his office in Benin City, the State capital while speaking on the preparedness of the Edo State Investment Promotion Office (ESIPO) to engage more with businesses for quick resolution of their challenges in the New Year.
He noted that conversations with relevant authorities like the Benin Electricity Distribution Company (BEDC) and other stakeholders in the energy industry are already ongoing to put the businesses, especially the manufacturers in a proper perspective.
According to him, “Going into this year 2023, we are determined to make every business that is operating in Edo State have electricity energy as well as renewable energy. I can assure you that businesses operating in this state will have more energy to carry out their businesses this year. We have commenced the conversations already. In our last EoDB Council meeting in 2022, we raised the need to seriously engage the BEDC to make electricity available to businesses. This is because the majority of the businesses depend on the BEDC for now. So, we must do something about this”
Speaking to the opportunities offered by the passage of a bill to establish an electricity market for Edo State, which was passed by the Edo State House of Assembly in July 2022, Kelvin Uwaibi noted that issues associated with electric power generation and distribution in Edo State would soon be addressed positively adding that Edo is an energy hub.
He cited the 95MW Ossiomo Electricity Power Plant which currently provides 24-hours power to government offices within the state capital, Ologbo communities in Ikpoba Okha LGA as well as the businesses within the industrial cluster in that area.
Uwaibi said: “As a state, Edo is advantageous in terms of energy. Firstly, we have Ossiomo Power Company, an independent power plant that generates and distributes electric power to government offices in the state. With the passage of a bill by the Edo State House of Assembly for a law to repeal the rural electricity board law of 1972 thereby establishing an electricity market for Edo State, which happened in July last year, we are having conversations to provide businesses with this alternative source”
“As we speak, businesses that operate within Ologbo industrial corridor are already enjoying this arrangement. The energy industry is a huge one. And Edo is an energy hub. We are inviting other players in the industry to come and invest in Edo. The National Assembly has also helped us by passing into law, the electricity bill to boost power production in Nigeria. That was shortly after our state assembly passed that bill. This is an indication that we can now resolve the issues associated with power generation and distribution in this country, especially in this state”
“We are also having conversations around renewable energy as another option. We are determined to explore all the opportunities available to resolve the power issues in Edo State. That way, cost of production will be reduced and prices of goods will also reduce.”