September 24, 2023

EDITORIAL: The Struggle For Survival Among Giants of Africa

EDITORIAL: The Struggle For Survival Among Giants of Africa

EDITORIAL: The Struggle For Survival Among Giants of Africa



By JP Ashedzi


Nigeria is sub-Saharan Africa’s most populated country with an estimated population of 213.4 million people in 2021, according to reports, more than half of its population live below the poverty margin.

Hence, there is a real struggle for survival in our dear country., people, first, work extremely hard to survive the economic conditions in the nation to avoid getting swallowed up by the burdens of survival.

While we try to breathe in all these, there is also the question of turning the money one earns to consumable substance. This is so because one cannot eat or wear the money they earn, so even after making it, they have to find ways of turning the money into clothes, food, shelter for the necessities before it graduates to other requirements.

First and most important on the list will be food, how do we turn money into food? Of course, the most obvious answer would be to buy raw materials and then turn the raw materials into processed food.

In the very distant past and in a few rural areas today, the use of firewood for cooking was/is active. However, most rural areas today have employed the combination of other means of cooking like electricity and gas to process their raw materials.

But then because firewood is either inaccessible, inappropriate or uncivilized to be used by people living in other areas apart from the rural, there comes the need to depend on electricity or cooking gas (LPG).

Currently, only 45% of Nigeria’s population is connected to the energy grid, whilst power supply difficulties are experienced around 85% of the time and almost nonexistent in certain regions. At best, the average daily power supply is estimated at four hours, although several days can go by without any power at all.

Moreover, even those who have this rickety supply of electricity are faced with outrageous tariffs every month. So most people have to turn to cooking gas for a means to prepare their meals.

A few years ago, people considered gas too dangerous to use in their homes, but in recent times, gas has now become a saving grace. On another hand, since the electricity supply is usually poor from the government, most households have to look for means of generating their own power by themselves and then the burden falls on PMS-powered generators.

Nigeria was the leading oil producer in Africa as of 2022. Oil production amounted to roughly 69 million metric tons in the country. But still, Nigerians bleed for fuel.

But, in June 2023, President Tinubu removed fuel subsidy and the price of PMS at filling stations did a through-the-roof shoot and rose from less than N150 to over N220 per litre.

Now, we have fallen back on gas once more as a saving grace. We now look at gas to cook and to provide electricity for our houses.
A common act now has become turning PMS powered generators to gas powered generators.

Apart from the problem of increase in petrol price, converting your petrol generator to run on cooking gas is a step towards sustainable energy usage. It helps to combat the negative effects of greenhouse gases and promotes a healthier environment for all.

Furthermore, it is safe and way cheaper than its other counterparts. A 5 kg cylinder of cooking gas can provide 40-50 run hours with a 2.5kva generator, while petrol of the same price may last only 15 run hours. This saves you over 40% in fuel costs compared to petrol.

Reports say individuals planning to convert their generator to run on gas only need a gas cylinder, its accompanying components (hose, regulator), and a hybrid carburetor that facilitates operation with either petrol or gas.

An interesting phenomenon about converting your petrol-powered generator to a gas powered one is that it can be a DIY activity. An article by 1001 Entrepreneurs revealed that you require only the following 9 steps to become an owner of a gas powered generator and enjoy uninterrupted power supply like many other Nigerians today.

Open the air filter compartment gently and remove the filter.

Unscrew the air filter housing to reveal the two nuts that connect the carburetor to the combustion chamber.

Carefully unscrew the nuts from the studs.

Slightly shift the carburetor forward to expose the gasket.

Pay attention to the gasket between the combustion chamber and the carburetor. Ensure it is undamaged, as any damage can cause pressure loss and make the generator unstable.

If the gasket is cracked or damaged, replace it with a new one. Gaskets are affordable.

Remove the connecting rod and the spring on the carburetor with caution.

Now, remove the petrol carburetors

Install the dual fuel carburetor and reassemble the system by following the reverse order of the steps

As the world is changing, we have to develop with it. We have to grow into accepting the necessary changes it throws at us. However, we must be cautious so that the change we accept does not become the fall of us. Let’s keep breathing.

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