Former Energy Minister blasts Bio’s Governance Transition Report

25 Babadorie Hills, Lumley, Freetown, Sierra Leone.
Tel:+232 78 726 084 _______________________________________________________________________________________

July 5th, 2018

Dr. David J. Francis
Chief Minister
State House

Dear Chief Minister

My attention has been drawn to the launched Government Transition Report which made references to me with respect to the Aggreko Contract et al.

I believe there are several inaccuracies in the report and crave your indulgence in making the following observations.

1. As dry seasons approach, in anticipating the drop in power from Bumbuna, and to avoid blackout which has various terrible and crippling consequences on the lives of the people, the standing Dry Season Committee, (with the membership of the Ministry of Energy, Ministry of Finance, Attorney General’s Office, PPP Unit, State House SPU, EDSA and EGTC), would meet every week for deep discussions on plans to keep the power on, and decisions jointly taken. It has never been a unilateral action and the Minister does not sign any Agreement alone. Please see “Annexe A”, minutes of one such Dry Season meeting, evidencing the attendance of the above mentioned MDAs.

2. The Aggreko contact was the subject of an international tender launched by EDSA and supervised by the World Bank in 2016, that went through a rigourous procurement process. Aggreko won the bid following which there was extensive negotiation by the Dry Season Committee. The contract was also cleared by the NPPA and the AG’s Office. The Board of EDSA , the Offtaker, deliberated and approved for the Chairman EDSA and the DG to sign the Agreement. See “Annexe B”. Invitation to Tender.

The contract signed in December 2017 was simply an extension occasioned by the dwindling water level at Bumbuna and the fast approaching dry season. Even though Karpowership had berthed, construction of the transmission towers and other delays meant it could not be deployed immediately.

3. Aggreko is an Emergency Power Rental contract, for only 6 months of the Dry Season. This cannot be compared to a normal IPP of 2 years or more. The tarif calculated by EDSA for Agggreko was 23cents per kwh inclusive of fuel and not 35cents per kwh without fuel. Please see “Annexe C” EDSA ‘s Report.

4. If Ethiopia is 14 times less expensive than 35cents, that would put that tarif at 2.5cents. Hardly feasible.

6. EDSA selected the locations of Blackhall Road and Wellington as the most optimal sites given the network contraints.

7. As an Emergency Power rental contract, the contractor is not expected to leave his plant behind as this was never part of the Tender or the Agreement.

8. Please refer to clause A of the attached Aggreko Contract. The $1.69million referred to is the Capacity Charge for the power supplied and not an advance payment per se. Please see “Annexe D”, relevant portion of the Aggreko Contract.”

9. Finally, on this, electricity is an expensive business but the cost of darkness is much higher than the cost of light. We put many measures in place, such as the Electricity Crimes and Offenses Committee, to ensure EDSA becomes viable and independent of Government’s financial input. This and other initiatives and guidelines were in my Hand Over Notes.

10. With respect to a corporate, not personal loan with Sierra Leone Commercial Bank, satisfactory arrangements had been made and the matter put to rest.

With respect to holding two diplomatic passports without due process, this is impossible as the Foreign Ministry aproves all renewals of diplomatic passports.

I hope the foregoing would be taken into consideration and the negative impression created around my character and reputation corrected.

May I also seize this opportunity, dear Chief Minister, to forward to you a copy of my 4 Year Final Term Report 2014 to 2018, which outlines the activities and achievements of the Energy Sector under my tenure. Hoping you may find it of some use. See “Annexure”

Thank you for your kind attention.

Yours faithfully

Amb. Henry O. Macauley
Former Minister of Energy

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