Borno state, situated in the North East of Nigeria, has completed the largest solar panel factory in the country and Africa at large.
The factory is located at Jimtilo Village and is said to be fully automated and has the capacity to produce 40 Megawatts worth of panels per year, with each panel having 300 watts capacity.
Engineer Ali Ibrahim, the man who is executing Governor Kashim Shettima’s industrialisation policy, said the governor intends to set the stage for the state’s industrialisation. Ibrahim noted that the development is in line with the Governor’s desire to kick-start the economy of the state in response to the economic dislocation wrought on the state by a decade-long insurgency.
Ibrahim pointed out that since power has been a major problem for the country, the Borno State Government figured it would be nice to create a solution to it through investment in solar energy. He also noted many industrialised countries like Germany, use solar energy to aid their industries, even though they have little sunlight compared to Borno State.
As a result of the solar plant, Borno state is set to become an energy provider to many states and businesses as well. Ibrahim said the main goal is to provide cheap and affordable electricity to the very people that are in dire need of it. The project is also expected to boost economic activities, and ultimately help many people out of poverty.
According to Ibrahim, “in fact, we believe that we will change the way we do irrigation in the North, Nigeria and the whole of Africa. It is very difficult for farmers to make profit in tandem with the sweat they put in because getting the energy to power their water generating sets is very costly due to fluctuating oil prices”.
He added that “we will provide access to energy through less costly but highly effective and affordable solar power to make it profitable and less strenuous for farmers to power their sets”.
The solar factory which is the largest in Africa, will become a major source of revenue generation for Borno state. This will in turn improve the state’s Internally Generated Revenue.