Taraba state Governor, Arc. Darius Ishaku has raised hopes that Nigeria can generate enough electricity to meet her needs and even export the commodity. Ishaku, who was also a former minister of power said it does not take a miracle for that to happen.
Ishaku who spoke through his Senior Special Assistant on Public Affairs, Emmanuel Bello, said the potential for power generation are there with the right policies and will. According to him, electricity is one of the ways the nation can meet all its millennial goals. Ishaku noted further that Nigerians must not give up on this expectation.
He said, “Nigerians should not despair that the forces of darkness have won. Electricity is now something everyone takes for granted in this century. In fact, even smaller countries have overcome this, and I strongly believe we can have our success story too. The potential is there, and in fact, even the political will is now accelerating. As a minister, I saw this, and now as the Governor, I’m even encouraged that we are on the verge of breaking the curse of darkness.”
He noted further that it does not require any prophecy. “If I would also give my prediction like I see many are doing, I want to say that we shall soon get our act right. In Taraba state, we already see how this resolve can become a reality. Our Kashimbilla Dam located in my town Takum, when eventually commissioned, shall add 40 megawatts to what we currently have. I’m excited about the prospect. When I was the minister, I know how much work we put in to make that dream a reality, and it is now only a matter of time. The immediate impact of Kashimbila would be felt by Takum, the entire southern part of the state and neighbouring states. It has great potential too for agriculture, tourism and other expansions.”
Nationally, Ishaku said the Mambilla hydro project, also located in Taraba state is another source of hope. He said, ” let me inform Nigerians that the project when eventually completed would add over 3000 megawatts to the nation’s light profile. I believe the will to undertake that project is there, so I have never given up. The era of despondency is over. Nigerians would one day wake up to the fact of constant electricity. ”
Narrating how Taraba is tackling its internal need for power, the Governor observed that he initially paid off the backlog of what was owed the power company. This act, he said, encouraged the sector. “As I speak to you, Taraba people are enjoying a steady supply of light. One of the companies that had practically died on the Mambilla due to lack of power is now back. What we did was to reactivate the Kakara dam and now the tea company there is back to life. Jobs are back too. For me, that is symbolic of what’s possible when good will meets sound policies.”
Ishaku said Taraba is gradually becoming the choice destination for investors looking for a place where electricity is not such a challenge, stressing that Taraba has become the last hope for the country regarding power generation.