German engineers present energy equipment to energy sector

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

The technical engineering team from Germany yesterday presented energy equipment and tools to the energy sector of The Gambia at the Petroleum House in Bijilo.

 The team here for the fact finding mission which is geared towards helping out the government of The Gambia and the energy sector in particular with solutions and procedures which was initiated by the German president on his recent visit to The Gambia.

Baba Fatajo, managing director of NAWEC thanked the president of Germany and his team for putting up a technical team that has been here in The Gambia for the past one week, describing as hectic, tedious period for the team.

“I understand that they used to be at work up to 3 a.m. in the morning just to make ensure that they got to the root of the problems that exist in the energy sector in The Gambia” he added.

For his part, the board chairman of NAWEC, Aki Allen, said that they are all very anxious to see that the country has a permanent solution to this problem.

“We are being guided by the initial observations that the German team made,” he said. He added that it is the entire system that has to be overhauled which is one of the reasons the government has approved the connection with the German team.

Also speaking at the presentation ground, Anita Martin, a representative from the German Embassy in Dakar said that they are aware that the priority of the Gambian population is the energy sector.

She further revealed that they have several missions in The Gambia which include the security sector reform but they have discovered on the field when they visited various ministries and other stakeholders. “And we asked them what is important for the populace at the moment and all of them were concerned with electricity then that is where the idea started to develop.”

The German President, according to Madam Anita, promised for an emergency measurement to stabilise the electricity problem in the country and hopefully to build up long term development projects in the energy sector.

“Our first step is to send our energy experts in the country to get concrete recommendations which will be forwarded to the our government, then we hope to start the actual work as soon as possible since it’s a matter of emergency problem which is confirmed by the experts” she conquered .

Guido Zimmermann, the team leader of the mission from Germany said that they first visited Kotu Power Plan and they found out that they should first invest a short term measures which they decided to support with spare parts of one or two generators.

“What we have seen is that there is a lack of communication of net control which is a very important issue for the future and it is seen as a high priority project and training the engineers on how to do the measurements, how to read it and how to find the right answers so that power shortage will not happen often” he said. 

“It will also be known that the repairing will be less at the end, less power cuts mean that the machines or engines will have a longer life that will be the first stem and it is what we see in urgency” he added.

Norbert Kolb, senior electrical engineer from Germany to The Gambia said that the situation at hand is very serious and much urgent attention is needed.

“It is not impossible to find a solution as the Gambian engineers are working very tirelessly with us and thank you for giving us the best people you have which made the job very easy for us” he emphasised.

“We have also found out that since technology is moving very fast, the equipment I selected could have filled a room 10 years ago” he said.

Author: Fatou B. Cham