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Youth Energy Corps to be formed to Promote Solar Lanterns 🗺

Photo: Yhomo Hutchinson
Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, addresses handover ceremony for solar lanterns to seven constituencies, at the Office of the Prime Minister in St. Andrew on April 30.

A Youth Energy Corps will be formed under the Government’s Housing, Opportunity, Production and Employment (HOPE) Programme and will be responsible for publicly educating people about the use of the solar lanterns that will be distributed in seven constituencies.

They are Eastern St. Andrew, East Rural St. Andrew, South St. Andrew, West Rural St. Andrew, East Central St. Andrew, East Kingston and Port Royal, and St. Andrew West Central.


The corps will also have responsibility for repairing and replacing the 5,000-plus lanterns, which were procured from United States-based Nokero International Limited, in cases where malfunctioning occurs.


The aim of the corps will be to ensure the replacement of open flames as sources of light, which has resulted in tragic fires affecting vulnerable communities in those constituencies.


Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, has tasked National Coordinator of the HOPE Programme, Lieutenant Colonel Martin Rickman, to keep in touch with the seven Members of Parliament to identify participants for the energy corps.

“I’m imposing on the Members of Parliament to work with Colonel Rickman to see how we can find a partnership to support the parallel services that come with this,” he said.

“The social enterprising aspect of this is critical. You could actually now start a booming industry in supply and repair and the use of the lamps,” Mr. Holness added.


In an interview with JIS News, Colonel Rickman, said he will be working closely with Science, Energy and Technology Minister, Dr. the Hon. Andrew Wheatley, and the Petroleum Corporation of Jamaica (PCJ), in furtherance of the task given by the Prime Minister.

He informed that currently, proposals are being examined from local and international organisations, whose business it is to train young people and distribute solar lights.

“What we are doing now is putting the mechanisms together to train the young people to start the process,” he said.




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