The government of Sierra Leone through President Dr. Julius Maada Bio has launched the rehabilitation and extension project for Bo-Kenema’s power distribution system in Kenema a city in the West African country’s Eastern Province.
The project entails the upgrading and building of a 70 kilometer overhead 33 kilovolt (kV) line between Bo and Kenema along with the construction of two primary substations and rehabilitation of two city center 33/11 kV substations in Bo and Kenema. It also involves the extending of a medium voltage (MV) and high voltage (HV) distribution network in both cities.
The cost and beneficiaries of the project
The total project cost of the project is estimated at UA 38.08 million of which, the African Development Bank will contribute UA 9.309 million, the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) UA 27.84 million, and the Government of Sierra Leone (GoSL) UA 0.93 million.
Avinash Dadhich, the President of Alpha TND Limited, contractors of the project, said that the project was going to directly benefit households, small businesses, and manufacturing units located in the towns of Bo, Kenema, and Blama.
In general, he said, more than 500,000 persons would benefit from a better power supply in one way or another owing to the project which is identified as a key deliverable of the Government’s Post Ebola Recovery Program (PERP) and in line with Sierra Leone’s Agenda for Prosperity (A4P) renewed focus.
Government plans for the energy sector
According to President Maada Bio, the government plans to build robust energy infrastructure, train citizens to ensure a smooth knowledge transfer regime, and deliver on the new energy projects.
“My government recognizes the impact of energy insecurity on quality of life, public service delivery, and business development. We understand that access to reliable energy supply is good for learning and education, and it could also support the establishment and enhancement of huge financial and communication facilities. My government insists on providing reliable energy access to Sierra Leoneans because it is critical to development,” said the president.