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At least a dozen solar energy companies are competing to help fill Nigeria’s power gap – and COVID-19 has made the need for their services more acute By Libby George and Nneka Chile LAGOS, May 20 (Reuters) – In a hallway in Lagos, Gbemisola Olowokere taps contentedly on her laptop. The 23-year-old says the corner, underneath a sliver of window, has functioned well as a makeshift office since the coronavirus pandemic forced her to work from home. But things didn’t start well. “I had major problems,” Olowokere told Reuters. “I have deadlines and things I need to submit … and I couldn’t, because I didn’t have power.” Nigeria’s notoriously sclerotic power infrastructure means fuel-powered generators provide at least four times as much electricity as the grid. Most locals have generators, but few run them through the day due to cost, noise and – a growing health risk since the respiratory disease started spreading – choking smoke. Olowokere found her solution in a yellow box bought by her employer from solar company Lumos. Connected to a panel on her roof, it keeps her phone, laptop and WiFi running through the workday, as well as a music speaker. Lumos is one […]

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