The International Centre for Energy, Environment and Development (ICEED), has trained the first 24 solar technicians out of the targeted 140 for Borno State.
Tagged ‘Borno MAIDA project’, the training, which combined intensive classroom and practical activities, had five young women among the graduated solar technicians.
Under the project, 140 young men and women would be trained on solar installation and business in Six LGAs of Borno State, while some health and educational facilities, as well as households in the locations will be equipped with solar energy kits to reduce protection risks for women and children, and reduce gaps in services resulting from energy deficiencies.
In a statement made available to The Guardian, Executive Director of ICEED, Ewah Eleri, said access to electricity is vital to improved livelihood adding that this is often highly constrained, and more exacerbated in conflict-affected areas in the country.
Eleri disclosed that research conducted by ICEED in 2018, on the level of satisfaction with the public power supply in six LGAs of Borno State shows that 62 percent of respondents were not satisfied with the level of public power supply to homes.
He noted that solar energy as an alternative energy solution, as well as solar technicians, is almost non-existent in conflict-affected communities of Borno State, adding that solar energy business has been, and continues to be, a male-dominated field, leaving women out of the livelihood track.
He hinted that in order to address the gaps, the ICEED in partnership with Mercy Corps with funding from the European Commission is implementing a project aim at strengthening resilience and improve the livelihood of people in six of the LGAs affected by the insurgency in Borno State.
Eleri said: “I am glad that women in Borno are beginning to get involved in an area that has been seen as the exclusive preserve of men. Solar energy offers a win-win situation for anybody that wants to get in as an entrepreneur. I am sure in a short while, you will start reaping the benefits of this training. In providing the installations, the trained solar technicians will be actively involved, thus enhancing their skills and visibility.”