By Eunice Orike
Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, has said the 2022 Revised National Energy Policy NEP, and National Energy Master Plan NEMP, will impact positively on the nation’s energy sector. He stated this while speaking to newsmen after the Federal Executive Council FEC, chaired by President Muhammadu Buhari approved both documents in Abuja.
Onu pointed out that the revised policy and master plan would enable Nigeria take optimum advantage of available sources of energy in the country. “Nigeria has an abundance of crude oil, fossil fuels, and variants of renewable energy (solar, hydro, wind, geothermal and biomass), in commercial quantities, and a good mix of all these will greatly improve the energy supply in the country”, he said.
The NEP and NEMP were developed by the Energy Commission of Nigeria ECN, a parastatal under the Federal Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation.
In his comments, the director-general, ECN, Prof. Eli Bala, said the revised NEP and the NEMP approved by the Federal Government through the FEC will enhance performance in the energy sector through proper coordination because the policy will provide an instrument for the coordination of the implementation of government policies.
Giving a background to the documents, the ECN boss said in 1990, the commission charged with the responsibility for the strategic planning and coordination of all national energy policies, initiated a committee comprising of stakeholders in the nation’s energy sector, to draft a National Energy Policy NEP,hitherto non-existent.
He explained that the draft NEP was submitted to the government in 1993 and reviewed severally by inter-ministerial committees, before it was approved by the Federal Government in April 2003 and launched by President Olusegun Obasanjo on June 20, 2005.
Bala elucidated that arising from the 2003 National Energy Policy, a national committee was constituted in 2007, with members drawn from the relevant stakeholders to draft a National Energy Master Plan NEMP.
According to him, the NEMP is a roadmap for the implementation of the NEP that seeks to achieve the goals of policy by converting its strategies to actionable programmes, activities and projects with timelines.
He further said the NEP serves as an omnibus umbrella energy policy that covers all energy sub-sectors and gives the Federal Government overall energy policy direction in the exploitation of its energy resources for national energy security and development in an environmentally sustainable manner and with the active participation of the private sector.
The objectives of the NEP and NEMP, Bala stated, among others, are to ensure the development of the nation’s energy resources with diversified energy resources options for the achievement of national energy security and an efficient energy delivery system with an optimal energy resource mix, guarantee increased contribution of energy productive activities to national income, guarantee adequate, reliable and sustainable supply of energy at appropriate costs and in an environmentally friendly manner to the various sectors of the economy for national development; guarantee an efficient and cost-effective consumption pattern of energy resources; accelerate the process of acquisition and diffusion of technology and managerial expertise in the energy sector and indigenous participation in energy sector industries for stability and self-reliance.