The Ecuadorian Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. Leopoldo Rovayo Verdesoto has advised Nigeria to emulate his country, in managing its power sector crisis.
He said Ecuador was hitherto held to ransom by what he described as a “Power Mafia”, which monopolized power production and distribution in the country, but which has now been surmounted by the present Ecuadorian leadership.
Mr. Verdesoto, who gave the recommendation during a courtesy visit to Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje of Kano state, pointed out that within a short period, his country as able to construct eight power plants and is moving towards complete self-sufficiency through renewable energies, particularly hydroelectric power.
The envoy said: “if Ecuador, a small country can make it, why not Nigeria?”, stressing that the country has huge resources and able manpower to place itself among the leading economies in the world.
Ambassador Verdesoto particularly noted that states like Kano were blessed with solid minerals which could not be processed locally, for economic development, without constant power supply, pointing out that the fact that expatriate companies export the minerals and process them abroad is not the best for the state and Nigeria at large.
He also stressed the need for collaboration with states like Kano, in the area of agriculture, saying his country has an Institute of Agriculture that can join hands with farmers and authorities in Nigeria for mutual gain.
Responding, Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje told the envoy that the state has several facilities for irrigation and would welcome foreign direct investment from Ecuador in not only agriculture but also hydro energy.
“We have land and sunshine that will facilitate private sector investment in solar energy development and because we are agriculturally endowed, we are now the biggest producer of whet in Nigeria”, the governor maintained, asserting that involvement of Ecuadorian investors in such critical sectors would strengthen Nigeria-Ecuador relations.
Dr. Ganduje also solicited a sister cities relationship programme with any city in Ecuador, to create and foster economic, cultural and friendship bond.