Written by Sarah NEGEDU

Insecurity: FCTA mulls solar energy for schools

As part of measures to tame the rising spate of insecurity in the nation’s capital, the FCT Secondary Education Board, SEB, says it will be embarking on a massive solar electrification project in select secondary schools across the territory.

Already, the board has installed over 810 units of solar-powered street lights, in 18 boarding senior secondary schools and one pilot day secondary school in the first phase of the project.

Chairman of FCT-SEB, Hon. Yahaya Mohammed, said 59 other schools across the six area councils of the FCT have also been pencilled down to benefit in subsequent phases of the solar project.

He said the solar-powered street light project is meant to tackle the increasing challenge of insecurity and epileptic power supply in the territory.

“The stand-alone solar-powered project was initiated to meet up with the tide of time, and we are quite aware of the epileptic power supply in the country, coupled with the issue of insecurity. We are also aware of recent cases of kidnappings in some communities in the FCT. So, the project is meant to keep kidnappers away from our boarding schools.”

Mohammed disclosed that in addition to the installation of the stand-alone solar-powered projects in FCT schools, the board has also recruited additional security personnel in the schools, to protect facilities from vandals, irrespective of whether the school is a day school or a boarding school.

Earlier, the Director of FCT-SEB, Mrs. Nanre Emeje, had noted that the project has changed the narratives in the 18 senior secondary schools and one-day senior secondary school in the FCT, because the schools are lightened up at night.

Emeje revealed that there are plans, in the next phase of the project, to extend the lights to the students’ classrooms and hostels, while arrangement is also on to extend the project to all the 77 senior secondary schools in the FCT, since it is an on-going project.

Some principals of benefiting schools said the solar project have not only improved security in their schools, but has boosted academic performance.

The principal of Government Girls Secondary School Dutse, Rukaya Hassan, said, “Being a boarding school, the environment can be dark and students afraid to go for their night preps, but since the installation of the solar street lights, students now move freely and some even study under the street lights when the public power goes out or we turn off the school generators.”

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