By Justina Auta
The Minister of State for Petroleum, Timipre Sylva, says the Federal Government is working towards opening micro gas distribution channels across all local governments areas in the country.
Sylva, disclosed this at the inauguration of the Nigerian Women for Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) project, organised by the National Centre for Women’s Development (NCWD), Zigma Gas Limited and Federal Ministry of Petroleum Resources on Friday in Abuja.
The minister, represented by his Senior Special Assistant on LPG, Brenda Ataga, emphasised on healthy alternative to firewood as fuel for cooking because it is a clean source of energy.
“The ministry is targeting to ameliorate the energy challenge in Nigeria and clean cooking gas is key in this regard because 70 per cent greenhouse emissions are caused by deforestation.
“This LPG project will enable us to empower rural women to use a more cleaner energy source for cooking,” he said.
The Director-General, NCWD, Mrs Mary Ekpere-Eta, revealed that 99 million women across households in all the LGAs would benefit from the project within the next three years.
“This partnership will be of benefit to Nigerian women and youths as it will support the efforts of the Federal Government in achieving its 2023 sustainable energy targets.
“The project is targeted at reaching 99 million women and households within three years cutting across the 120,000 polling units and all wards in the 774 LGAs in the federation,” she said.
She said that the centre would carry out massive door-to-door campaign on the project .
Ekpere-Eta explained that the centre would create kiosk in all LGAs to serve as micro distribution centres for safe-to-use LPG cans.
“The first phase of this project will be targeting 11 states – Katsina, Sokoto, FCT, Ebonyi, Plateau, Adamawa, Borno, Bayelsa, Cross River, Imo and Ogun,’’ She added.
Also speaking, United Nations Humanitarian and Resident Coordinator, Mr Edward Kallon, said that the LPG project was a window of opportunity for Nigerian women to impact in the oil and gas industry.
Kallon, therefore, called on the government and relevant stakeholders to drive non-discriminatory employment practices, increase access to capacity building and engage women in community consultation and decisions for their active participation in the sector.
President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Zigma Gas limited, Dr. Funmi Ogbue, said that the distribution channnels would open up more than 700, 000 jobs for Nigerians.
Represented by the company’s Project Engineer, Mr Adeshina Olaitan, Ogbue stressed the need for women and youths to venture into oil and gas business to improve their incomes and national economy. (NAN)
•PHOTO: Petroleum Minister of State Timipre Sylva