INVESTIGATION: How Multi-Billion Naira BUK Photo voltaic Plant Is Deserted To Rats As Dept., Colleges, Hostels Run On Mills

INVESTIGATION: How Multi-Billion Naira BUK Photo voltaic Plant Is Deserted To Rats As Dept., Colleges, Hostels Run On Mills

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How Multi-Billion Naira BUK Photo voltaic Plant Is Deserted To Rats As Dept., Colleges, Hostels Run On Mills

In an effort to supply the nation’s ivory towers with uninterrupted electrical energy, in 2019 the Federal Authorities commissioned its photo voltaic hybrid energy plant at Bayero University Kano (BUK), a multi-billion naira funding awarded to a German firm that stopped working final yr.

On this investigation, Elijah Akoji, uncovers how this left the establishments’ departments, colleges, hostels, and even main places of work on the mercy of turbines.

College students groan, lecturers fume, administrative employees are annoyed, colleges whereas departments run on turbines, and library now closes earlier than the traditional scheduled hour as entry to electrical energy turns into a scarce commodity for over 55,815 college students and three,077 employees of Bayero College Kano (BUK) regardless of over 2.8 billion naira 7.1 megawatts hybrid solar energy plant funding designed to supply electrical energy for the college neighborhood.

Bala Haruna, 25, not his unique title, a scholar of Electrical Engineering couldn’t describe his pleasure when the photo voltaic mission was first commissioned, it got here with a lot hope for him, however his hope was reduce brief after he returned from the Covid break in 2021 and found that he should go away the library by 7 pm and skim utilizing avenue lights and likewise sleep within the hostel with out gentle, this grew to become his greatest nightmare as a scholar whose workload requires extra studying hours in order to excel in his research.

Pressured by his predicament, Bala’s solely choice was to promote his laptop computer to lift some cash and safe an off-campus residence together with his pal to ease the invoice, the place he can have entry to an everyday electrical energy provide and gained’t need to learn underneath the road gentle within the college because it has change into the one approach out for college kids.

“It’s a complete waste of assets to know {that a} multi-billion naira 7.1 megawatts hybrid photo voltaic plant lay deserted within the college, we thought after bidding farewell to the times of 6-10 pm generator hours within the college, we are going to by no means return to such life-style once more, the scenario has solely worsened as even departments now run on turbines,” Haruna laments.

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“My worse frustration shouldn’t be even having a handy place to learn, promoting my laptop computer was essentially the most troublesome determination I’ve made however the perfect, I’m about to graduate, think about not having gentle to learn as {an electrical} engineering scholar, it will likely be an enormous catastrophe for me and I’m not prepared for that,” he added.

In 2019, the Federal Authorities underneath its Energising Training Programme (EEP), a programme carried out by the Rural Electrification Company (REA), constructed a 7.1 megawatts hybrid photo voltaic plant, one of many greatest photo voltaic initiatives in Africa commissioned by Vice President Prof. Yemi Osibanjo, at Bayero College Kano (BUK), the Vice President reaffirmed the elimination of spending hundreds of thousands yearly for the acquisition of gas and diesel to run the establishment.

The photo voltaic plant which in accordance with college students solely labored for six months after commissioning, has been deserted to mud and rats whereas 3 years after, the college has returned to operating on generator.

With the multi-billion naira photo voltaic claimed funding, it’s estimated that about 16.5 MW of present turbines and Carbon Dioxide emission can be conserved, thereby inflicting the quantum of megawatts capability of petrol and diesel turbines to be eliminated.

Sadly, Bayero College Kano nonetheless spends over 50 million naira yearly on electrical energy provide to the college.

Sadiya Umar, not the unique title, from the division of Sociology, laments to SOLACEBASE how the unavailability of sunshine is forcing most college students to all the time need to have their group research outdoors the college.

“We’re actually struggling, now if we should research comfortably, we not contemplate the library, as an alternative, we contemplate going to our pals outdoors the college. The sunshine subject within the college has developed from worst to horrible, even our lecturers will inform us no gentle to arrange our lesson notes and that he can’t work from home, he’s simply paid to work within the workplace,” Umar mentioned.

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“As quickly as the college turns off the hostel generator which they’ve lowered from 6 pm to 9 pm, we’re pressured to sleep in darkness, even gentle from KEDCO is not assured. I need to say it’s a vital time to be a scholar of BUK,” she added.

The Simple Actuality.

A go to by SOLACEBASE to the Communication, Training, Social Science, and Engineering school, confirms his curiosity. Whereas within the communication school, it was noticed that the messenger was struggling to place the generator on for the college constructing.

On the division of Mass Communication and likewise Media and Info Research, the sound of their working generator may very well be heard all around the School.

School of Training, Engineering, and Social Sciences, share the identical expertise as most departments had been seen operating their turbines, that is simply to maintain administrative duties carried out, however for the lecture rooms and lecture theaters, college students of their massive numbers are pressured to make use of hand followers to get some air flow whereas lectures is ongoing.

Commissioning Stone at the Solar Power Station (Photo Credit: SOLACEBASE, Elijah Akoji.
Commissioning Stone on the Photo voltaic Energy Station (Picture Credit score: SOLACEBASE, Elijah Akoji.

A Employees from the college of communication who desires to stay nameless narrates to SOLACEBASE that the poor provide of sunshine is one main cause why a lot work is left undone.

“Until this very second, I don’t have a single thought why the college stopped utilizing the photo voltaic plant, I solely heard that it’s fully shut down, however as to the trigger, I don’t have a single thought about that.

“There are such a lot of untreated information, day-after-day I come to the workplace, it’s both there isn’t any gentle or by the point I shall be at school they’ll beep the sunshine and you’ll’t go away the lecture to go and attend to these duties, I simply hope this will get higher quickly as it’s making work so troublesome.”

Within the college library, college students are pressured to learn within the scorching climate whereas at night time the library generator solely works from 6 pm-8 pm.

College students like Amos Danlami, who was seen fanning himself within the library clarify that they’re used to the situation.

“I’m not longer bothered concerning the hotness, I simply set my studying time, I focus to attain it as deliberate, lamenting concerning the unavailability of sunshine will solely be a wasted effort, I doubt if the college is doing something to resolve it, so I solely learn throughout the day,” Danlami mentioned.

Monetary Breakdown

Whereas it was troublesome for this reporter to acquire the document of what’s spent month-to-month on gas and diesel by every school and division on month-to-month, this reporter then relied on the annual authorised finances for electrical energy, gas, and diesel within the establishment.

Picture of Energy Plant Use to Cost the Batteries… Distance View (Picture Credit score: SOLACEBASE, Elijah Akoji.Picture of Energy Plant Use to Cost the Batteries… Distance View (Picture Credit score: SOLACEBASE, Elijah Akoji.

Previous to the set up and commissioning of the photo voltaic plant in 2019, knowledge obtained by this newspaper has proven that in 2018, a complete of 26,965,338 million was authorised for electrical energy consumption and 20,398,785 million was authorised for gas and diesel prices for turbines.

In 2019, the identical yr the mission was commissioned, a complete of 26,965,338 million was authorised for electrical energy whereas 20,398,785 was additionally authorised finances for the acquisition of diesel and gas within the college.

In 2020, the COVID-19 yr, 22,139,912 million was authorised for electrical energy whereas 57,800,977 million was authorised for diesel consumption, a double improve within the authorised finances in comparison with the 2019 determine.

View of the Photo voltaic Panel (Picture Credit score: SOLACEBASE, Elijah Akoji.View of the Photo voltaic Panel (Picture Credit score: SOLACEBASE, Elijah Akoji.

Apparently, in 2021, the authorised finances determine for gas consumption elevated to 80,398,785 million whereas for electrical energy the quantity was maintained at 26,965,338 million. The electrical energy consumption for 2022 as authorised nonetheless fall at 26,965,338 million, whereas the authorised finances for gas and electrical energy elevated once more to 80,398,785 million.

Faculty Admit Photo voltaic Breakdown

Engineer Haruna Aliyu, the upkeep engineer in-charge of the photo voltaic mission in an interview with this newspaper couldn’t reply to all of the questions however supplied just a few.

“The photo voltaic plant has been down for a while now, after it was constructed and supervised by the Rural Electrification Company (REA), however was later handed over to the college and so they hands-off fully.

“It’s over a yr now because the photo voltaic plant stopped working, whereas we know it, we’re additionally making effort to deliver the engineers again to come back and resolve the problem as one of many issues was from scratch as the corporate didn’t work with any native engineer who will perceive the plant and assist resolve points once they come up, Aliyu mentioned.

“It’s a German firm which took monopoly of all the pieces and has refused to come back to assist resolve the problems stating safety as a significant component for his or her refusal, the college is doing its finest to see that the plant works once more and serves the college neighborhood successfully,” he added.

Engr. Dan Umma, Director Upkeep Providers Division, Bayero College Kano when contacted by way of a phone name declined to answer questions, direct the journalist to first search permission from the Vice Chancellor earlier than he can reply to any query as regard the photo voltaic mission.

Over 300 Million Wanted to Repair Drawback – Faculty Says

Lamara Garba, the Director Public Affairs of the establishment whereas offering particulars of the current state of the photo voltaic plant attributed rainfall as the reason for the injury, noting that the college doesn’t have such sum of money to repair it.

“The photo voltaic plant served the college inside the interval it was mounted in 2019 and a few a part of 2020, it was after this era that the plant shut down. We found that it’s the converter that obtained broken and can break the bank to restore.

“The corporate is giving a number of the reason why they will’t come to Africa for now, they had been in a position to detect the problem from Germany and have been unable to come back to repair it, from what we obtained from them, in conversion, it’s going to price over 300 million naira to repair the issue and the college can’t repair it, not with the quantity of downside on the bottom, when the corporate lastly agrees to come back over to resolve it, we are going to let everybody know, however for now, the college is on the matter to resolve the issue with the German firm,” Garba mentioned.


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