‘Biodun SOYELE

 

The Federal Government has set aside the sum of N250 million for willing autogas certified engineers and technicians to access in the country.

The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr Timipre Sylva, disclosed this on Tuesday in Abuja, at an Autogas Technicians Training and Certification Programme.

The programme was organised as part of the National Gas Expansion Programme by the Federal Ministry of Petroleum Resources in collaboration with AVM Energy Services Limited, Autolady and Euro LPG amongst others.

The minister, who was represented by the Senior Technical Adviser on Referendum, Mr Umar Gwandu, said that the money was already in the coffers of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and those interested in opening conversion centres could go for it.

Sylva explained that the decision to make the money available was as a result of the huge amount spent by the government on fuel subsidy, adding that it was in line with President Muhammadu Buhari’s commitment to adopt gas as an alternative fuel for the country.

“The amount of money government is spending on fuel subsidy is high so the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government, in a bid to ease the pains of Nigerians, decided to look inward and evolved ways to reduce the cost.

“If we focus on moving from fossil fuel to Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) and Compressed Natural Gas (CNG), it will save us a lot of money because the benefits are enormous.

“Apart from the fact that autogas is cheaper, we are also concerned about making the conversion of cars affordable so that Nigerians can indeed reap the advantage of this new policy,” the minister said.

He urged Nigerians to embrace gas-powered vehicles as they were cheaper, safer and more environmentally friendly.

Earlier, Mr Robinson Elijah, Chairman, Autogas Technology Education and Research Advisory Board urged Nigerians and other stakeholders to take advantage of the project.

Elijah reiterated the commitment of the board to maximise the investment while relying on the experience garnered over the years to ensure that the project was successful.

In his address, the Chairman, Euro LPG of Holland, Dr. Wahaab Abdallah, expressed readiness to equip Nigerians with the practical knowledge of conversion of biofuel vehicles to gas vehicles.

Abdallah pointed out that quality gas driven vehicles are more cost effective and conformed to national standard.

The Euro LPG boss added that the project will create jobs for Nigerians and ensure healthy environment.

He further advised that producing the kits and tanks in Niger shall crash the prices of conversion and therefore called on well-meaning Nigerians to take interest in the gas project.

The launching was witnessed by many dignitaries including the representatives of Governor of Kogi state Alhaji Yahaya Bello, Engr Abdulahi Sule, Governor of Nasarawa state, Mrs Sylva, Mrs Lami Hammed among others.

 

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