An American company, Arrow Capital Nigeria Limited, had concluded arrangements to build a $2.3 billion (N600 billion) solar energy plant at the University of Ilorin (Unilorin).
The university’s latest bulletin issued on Monday said that the institution’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor AbdulGaniyu Ambali and the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Arrow Capital, Brian Travis, signed the project’s Memorandum of Agreement (MoA).
It said the construction works on the project which would commence immediately would be completed within five months.
It said that on completion, the plant would be expected to generate 500MW of electricity and significantly improve the level of power supply in the country.
It said that Travis commended the Vice-Chancellor for his commitment to the project.
The bulletin was quoted as saying that the university was chosen for the project because of its strategic location.
It added that with its location, it would be easy to transmit power generated from the plant to Kano and Lagos.
According to the bulletin, the project when completed, will provide 10 per cent of Nigeria’s total power required, and will create jobs for many people.
Travis also said that the culture of excellence in the university coupled with its stable academic calendar in the last 16 years made it an ideal location for the project, it said.
“This is sure to guarantee security for the project and put the university on the global map,” it said.
On the source of funding for the project, Travis explained that it would be an entirely private funded project, it said.
“It is going to be a good example of a private-public partnership funded project,” it said.
Also, The institution’s Vice-Chancellor, Prof Ambali, described the project as an opportunity by the organised private sector to contribute to the Federal Government’s efforts in power generation and distribution.
The bulletin quoted Ambali as saying that the project, on completion, would guarantee a 24-hour-power supply to the university.
The university would consume only about 4MW of electricity generated from the project and would sell the remaining ones to the nation, it quoted him as saying.
The Vice-Chancellor disclosed that a solar panel assembly plant would be built in the university as part of the project.
“This will enhance the knowledge of engineering students and the entrepreneurial skills of the students. This project will contribute significantly to Kwara State and Nigeria at large and will be ready for inauguration by October,” the bulletin quoted Ambali as saying.