The Director General/Chief Executive Officer of the Energy Commission of Nigeria (ECN) Prof. Eli Jidere Bala fnse, fsesn, paid his first official visit to the National Centre for Energy and Environment (NCEE), University of Benin, on 29th January, 2014.
Accompanied by the Director, Management and Staff of the Centre, the Director General paid a courtesy call to the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Benin and Chairman, NCEE Governing Board, Prof. O.G. Oshodin, JP. After a brief introduction, the Vice-Chancellor and other Principal Officers welcomed the DG to the University. He expressed his gratitude to the DG/CEO and the Energy Commission of Nigeria for their support to the Centre to achieve its mandate. He stated that the University will continue to nurture and sustain the working relationship between the Centre and the Energy Commission of Nigeria. The Director General in a response thanked the Vice-Chancellor and the University Management for their support to the Centre and for creating a harmonious working relationship between the Centre and the University.
The Director General had an interactive session with Principal Officers of the University of Benin, staff of the Centre, Internal members of NCEE Governing Board, members of Thematic Research Groups and their leaders, collaborating Faculties, Ministries and other stakeholders working with the Centre. During the interactive session, the Director of the Centre, Prof. Lawrence I.N. Ezemonye delivered welcome address/highlights of the activities of the Centre since inception. He stated that the Centre has made research, development, demonstration and deployment its major thrust with human capital development as the fulcrum. He further pointed out various research projects the Centre had carried out. He acknowledged the support of the Energy Commission of Nigeria, the University of Benin under the leadership of the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. O.G. Oshodin JP, Leaders of Thematic Groups and Edo State Government.
The Vice-Chancellor, University of Benin and Chairman, NCEE Governing Board, Prof. O.G. Oshodin also delivered an address at the occasion. In his address, he welcomed the Director General and acknowledged his enormous support to the Centre since he assumed office. He further challenged the Centre to maintain high standard to justify the confidence reposed in the Centre by the Commission and Stakeholders. Goodwill messages and mandate statement were delivered by Edo State Commissioner for Energy and Water Resources, Barr. Chris Ebare, Prince Clem Agba, Edo State Commissioner for Environment and Public Utilities, represented by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Sir (TPL) S.O. Olayemi. There were other goodwill messages delivered by the Principal Officers, Deans and Directors of the University. Dr. Paul Epie, President, Edo State Jatropha Growers, Processing and Exporting Association of Nigeria (JAGPEAN) and his Delta State counterpart, Mr Boman Otiete also presented their goodwill messages at the event.
A special address was delivered by the Director General/Chief Executive Officer, Energy Commission of Nigeria, Prof. Eli Jidere Bala, fnse, fsesn. The DG/CEO expressed his heartfelt appreciation to the Vice-Chancellor and Principal Officers of the University of Benin for the immense support extended to the Centre since its establishment in 2009. He commended the Director, Management and Staff of the Centre for their outstanding performance and outputs in line with the mandate. He also acknowledged the effort of all collaborating departments, groups and individuals who has been working with the Centre to achieve its mandate. He further challenged the Centre to continue to push harder in its research, development and innovation activities and be part of the drivers of the transformation agenda of Mr. President, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, GCFR for the benefit of Nigerians and humanity in general.
PRESENTATION OF GIFTS
There was presentation of gifts/award to the Director General, the Vice-Chancellor and some staff of the Centre. The presentation and unveiling of the maiden edition of the Centre’s journal (International Journal of Renewable Energy and Environment, IJREE) by the Editor-in-Chief, Prof. F.E. Okieimen climaxed the interactive session.
COMMISSIONING OF CENTRE’S PROJECTS
The DG/CEO and other dignitaries then proceeded on a tour of the Centre and commissioned the following projects:
- Biodiesel Production Workshop
- Renewable Energy E-Library
- VSAT and Local Area Network Infrastructure
- Spectrophotometry Laboratory
The commissioning ceremony witnessed dignitaries from Edo and Delta States, Principal Officers, Deans and Directors, Faculty Representatives, Thematic Research Group Leaders, Heads of Departments in the University of Benin, Students Associations and other stakeholders working in collaboration with the Centre.