Africa has a population of over 1.3 Billion people, and almost half of the population – 600 million people are living without electricity. Lack of access to electricity among these African citizens renders them in the energy-poverty column, this is a major economic hindrance, the continent is being prevented from tapping into the modern economy potential of 600 million people (3 times the size of Nigeria; Africa’s Largest Economy).

Despite the 54% electrification rate in Nigeria, our country still maintains the largest economy in Africa. Although this economic figure is not in parity with the current standard of living of an average Nigerian. But If the country could manage a shift towards 100% electrification, more Millionaires (in USD and NGN ) could emerge, and the standard of living would be enhanced. The same is applicable to similar African countries struggling with average national electrification coverage.

If our governments could concentrate on no other thing than the electricity agenda, start to pay less attention to political struggles, and begin to harness economic potentials. We may rise up to be a powerful global market force. Our youths would grow and do borderless businesses.

As Nigerian entrepreneurs, it’s time we begin to look less on the government, after all the glory of the largest economy belongs to the Small and Medium Scale Enterprises – SMSE who continue to innovate and transform despite crazy bureaucratic barriers.

The Way Forward

Let’s continue to channel our energy in the direction of alternative power supply, we can’t let our government prevent us from being competitive in the global market space. “The alternative energy gap” is a business opportunity itself (ask the solar/inverter guys).

We have over 600 million people off the energy grid – 3 times the size of Nigeria’s population. Let’s ignite Africa and create opportunities for global dominance.


Bolaji Afolabi is a resourceful E-business Expert, Real Estate Consultant, and Global Opportunist with project experiences across sub-Saharan Africa  Read more…

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