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Ex-minister tasks South-East leaders, govts over power projects funding

A former Minister of Power, Prof. Barth Nnaji, has charged South-East leaders and governments to find ways of funding power projects, to ensure rapid development of the region.

Nnaji, who is also the Chairman, South-East Region Economic Development Company (SEREDEC), made the call in a paper titled: “Reliable and Sustainable Power and Supply in South-East Region’’.

The former minister was speaking on Monday at the ongoing 2017 South-East Economic Summit (SEES) being held in Enugu.

Nnaji said that the region needed vast amount of power to drive and achieve regional economic growth and expansion.

“Every other development of our dream in the region depends on adequate power supply and we cannot fold our hands and expect that it will be done by magic or other people.

“It lies on our hands, who know the importance and benefits, to rise and find lasting solution since the issue of power is currently on the concurrent list.’’

He underscored the need to strengthen regional power transmission infrastructure, to ensure stable power transmission to all economic centres and state capitals in the region.

“There is a need to design and install sub-stations at appropriate locations within the region.

“Also, to use `drops of water on a blotter’ approach to create power ring-fences that ultimately result in complete reliable electricity supply within the region,’’ he noted.

The former minister said that the South-East people must wake up from slumber and rise to the occasion of funding futuristic and progressive projects, especially for reliable power supply.

The ongoing summit with the theme “Re-positioning South-East for Rapid Economic Development’’ was organised by the South-East Governors’ Forum in conjunction with the Department for International Development (DFID), Nigeria.

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Chuka (Webby) Aniemeka

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