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Power Africa unveils $2.6m grant to nine energy firms

Power Africa, through the United States Agency for International Development, has announced grants totalling $2,620,650 to solar energy companies to provide reliable, affordable off-grid electricity to nearly 300 healthcare facilities in sub-Saharan Africa.

In support of the accelerated provision of off-grid solar energy to healthcare facilities in sub-Saharan Africa, Power Africa is awarding grants to a Nigerian solar energy firm and eight others.

Havenhill Synergy, the Nigerian firm, will be required to electrify 21 rural healthcare facilities in Oyo State, using ‘an energy-as-a-service’ business model. The facilities are mostly within peri-urban communities with limited reliable electricity access.

Other beneficiaries of the grants include KYA-Energy Group (Togo); Muhanya Solar Limited (Zambia); Nanoé (Madagascar); OffGridBox (Rwanda); OnePower (Lesotho); PEG Solar (Ghana); SolarWorks! (Mozambique) and Zuwa Energy (Malawi).

The companies are expected to utilise Power Africa funding to provide off-grid solar electricity solutions to 288 healthcare facilities across the nine countries represented.

A statement on Wednesday from the US Embassy in Abuja said nearly 60 per cent of all healthcare facilities in sub-Saharan Africa had no access to electricity, and of those that do, only 34 per cent of hospitals and 28 per cent of health clinics had reliable 24-hour access.

Power Africa acting Coordinator, Mark Carrato, said, “Solar energy holds great potential to expand and improve healthcare delivery in sub-Saharan Africa, and off-grid solar technology offers a clean, affordable and smart solution to electrify healthcare facilities located beyond the reach of national electricity grids.”

He added Power Africa’s experience showed that off-grid solar energy systems could be rapidly deployed to even the most rural facilities.

He said, “The remarkable thing about NDEP is that it is not just producing crude oil and exporting, it is adding value to the Nigerian economy. It has become an integrated oil and gas company. It has a mini refinery; it has a gas plant, and this translates to creation of job opportunities for the youths.

“It’s doing a lot to create opportunities for young people, creating wealth and also keeping part of the wealth within the country instead of just sending crude oil abroad and importing refined products.”
Punch

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