The Federal Government’s plan to supply millions of Nigerians with affordable power through its Electrification Project has received a boost as it obtained $550m from World Bank and African Development Bank, AfDB.
Investors King recalls that in 2020, the federal government had solicited for support as it said it lacked the financial capacity to run the project alone.
The Rural Electrification Agency (REA), a Federal Government organisation in charge of the electrification project had craved for a robust budget funding of about $2.5bn to supply power to 80 million people who do not have access to electricity across the country.
The Rural Electrification Agency stated that they received $350m from the World Bank and $200m from African Development Bank which amounted to $550 million.
The REA made the disclosure during its presentation in Abuja, on Thursday at the inauguration of the agency’s governing board by the Minister of State for Power, Goddy Jedy-Agba.
Members of the REA governing board include: Abdulazeez Yar’Adua as Chairman; Ahmad Salihijo as Managing Director; Michael Oluwagbemi; Chidi Nwogu, among others.
The agency stated that it had also received donations for the deployment of solar mini-grids for the project.
It said, “To give effect to some of its initiatives, REA has obtained financing amounting to $550m ($350m from the World Bank and $200m from the African Development Bank) for financing the Nigeria Electrification Project.
“This includes an additional $11m for financing the Rural Electrification Fund for the deployment of Solar hybrid mini-grids and solar home systems. These funds will ensure that millions of Nigerians have access to clean, safe, reliable and affordable electricity.”
Addressing the board members, Jedy-Agba urged them to deliver the mandates of the government and put in their best for the actualisation of the project.
He, however, assured that the REA board will not disappoint the public as he expressed hope of a massive outcome.
Burkina Faso’s Military Junta Foils Attempted Coup Amid Ongoing Instability
Burkina Faso’s military junta announced its successful thwarting of an attempted coup this week, once again highlighting the nation’s precarious stability in the face of an ongoing Islamist insurgency.
The fragile transitional government, led by Colonel Ibrahim Traore, found itself targeted by a group of military officers and their cohorts seeking to plunge the country into chaos.
Government spokesman Jean Emmanuel Ouedraogo released a statement late Wednesday, confirming the arrest of the individuals behind the plot, while asserting that those still at large were actively being pursued.
Traore, who took power a year ago after overthrowing Interim President Henri Paul Sandaogo Damiba, has been on edge due to the persistent specter of coups.
To address security concerns, Traore recently appointed new heads of the security services, including the National Intelligence Agency, following the arrest of several army officers accused of plotting against the state.
Ouedraogo reassured the public that a thorough investigation would be conducted to shed light on this latest attempted coup.
This incident in Burkina Faso underscores the troubling trend of military leaders seizing power in African nations, with Niger and Gabon experiencing similar developments in the past two years.
The West African nation remains at a critical juncture, teetering between democracy and instability as it grapples with internal and external threats.
French Ambassador Departs Niger Amid Escalating Tensions: Macron’s Pledge to Withdraw Troops Looms
Ambassador Sylvain Itte, along with six colleagues, left Niger’s capital, Niamey, on a flight bound for Paris via Chad.
This departure comes three days after French President Emmanuel Macron confirmed the withdrawal of the French envoy and pledged to withdraw approximately 1,500 French troops stationed in Niger by the end of 2023.
The abrupt exit of Ambassador Itte, as reported by Agence France-Presse, occurred at around 4 a.m. on Wednesday and followed the deterioration of relations between Niger’s military leaders and their former colonial power, France.
The strained relations were primarily triggered by the ousting of President Mohamed Bazoum in a coup on July 26, a coup that led to the severance of military ties between the two nations.
Macron’s initial refusal to adhere to the August 28 deadline set by the junta for Ambassador Itte’s departure only served to heighten the diplomatic standoff.
The junta had cited alleged French “actions contrary to Niger’s interests” as the reason for the ambassador’s expulsion.
In the latest development, the coup leaders formally requested a timeline for the withdrawal of French troops from Niger. Macron had previously confirmed his commitment to completing the withdrawal by the end of 2023, further emphasizing the changing dynamics of the Franco-Nigerien relationship.
On Wednesday, President Macron engaged in talks with Nigerien Foreign Minister Hassoumi Massaoudou, during which he reaffirmed France’s support for President Bazoum and expressed his country’s eagerness to see a return to constitutional order in Niger.
This statement from the Elysee underscores France’s continued involvement in Niger’s internal affairs despite the recent diplomatic tensions.
As both nations navigate these turbulent waters, the future of their diplomatic and military relations remains uncertain.
The departure of Ambassador Itte is just the latest chapter in this evolving saga, and it raises questions about the implications for France’s historical ties to its former colony and its broader strategic interests in the West African region.
G-20 Grants African Union Equal Membership Status to EU
The Group of 20 nations has reached a consensus to confer permanent membership status upon the African Union.
This significant move is aimed at empowering the African continent with a stronger voice in addressing pressing global issues, including climate change and emerging-market debt.
The announcement was made by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who served as the host of the G-20 summit held in New Delhi over a two-day period.
During this historic event, President Azali Assoumani of Comoros, who currently holds the presidency of the African Union, was warmly embraced by Prime Minister Modi and offered a seat at the summit table.
This strategic decision, which has been previously reported by Bloomberg News, grants the 55-member African Union the same prestigious status enjoyed by the European Union within the Group of 20.
European Council President Charles Michel expressed his delight regarding this development in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter.
He expressed eagerness for close cooperation between the African Union and the European Union within the framework of the G-20, solidifying the commitment to address global challenges collectively.
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