By State House Communication Unit
As government continues to roll out development projects few days to the March 7 elections, President Dr Ernest Bai Koroma in a groundbreaking ceremony launched the Western Area Power Generation Project at the Mechanical Services Unit, Kissy Dockyard in Freetown.
In his keynote remarks, President Koroma said few days to elections government was still rolling out development programmes as energy was one of the priorities of the ruling APC in 2007. He pointed out that no country can develop without energy as the generation of energy will foster economic growth and development. He went on to state that government after 2007 created the regulatory framework, created institutions, unbundled the sector and fostered the enabling environment for foreign investment in the energy sector. Such a development, he said, will open the private sector and will send a message that Sierra Leone is ready for business with continued attraction of Foreign Direct Investment.
He underscored the immense importance of the growth of the private sector to the country’s transformation. This project will support energy generation in the dries, he said, and encouraged all Sierra Leoneans to make the necessary sacrifice to see the country grow.
As the March 7 elections draw near, President Koroma reminded all that elections is not a matter of life and death and encouraged every citizen to support a peaceful, credible and transparent elections that will position the country as a democratically matured nation.
Making his statement, the Minister of Energy Ambassador Henry Macauley said the ground breaking ceremony demonstrated a vision of providing energy across the country saying, that 90% of the nation’s energy strategy has been achieved. He reported that his ministry has delivered Bankasoka, Charlotte mini dam (almost nearing completion), Makali dam, Addax power station, 30 MW project delivered, the 6MW solar park under construction, West African Power Pool among others. He pointed out that they have increased power generation from 7MW in 2007 to 282 MW in 2017 and also increased 47 million Kilowatts per hour in 2007 to 347 million Kilowatt per hour in 2017. He added that they have also put together the Energy efficiency policy, renewable energy policy, launched the energy revolution, as well as developed a framework for EDSA.
The Director of the Public Private Partnership Unit Mr Abu Kamara said the ceremony was a Significant milestone in investing in the sector by creating an innovative path in the ministry for energy solutions across the country. He said the project will add value to the energy transformation and delivering essential services to business and the people of Sierra Leone. He added that the project will elevate the sector and sets the platform for Foreign Direct Investment.
Representative of the Chairman Board of Directors of Electricity Distribution and Supply Authority (EDSA) Mr Arne Johansen said development will boost the private sector and contribute to the delivery of essential services adding, that with this project, the issue of emergency power solutions will be a thing of the past. “It will increase EDSA supply of energy and stabilize generational cost of the sector as well as transfer of knowledge,” he said.