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Energy minister visits WR electrification project sites

Mar 8, 2010, 12:38 PM | Article By: Lamin B Darboe

Barely a day after the formal signing of a 10-million US Dollar Western Region Electrification Project between the government of The Gambia and Global Trading Group, the Minister of Energy Sira Wally Ndow, accompanied by officials of her Ministry over the weekend visited four Western Region Electrification Project sites.

Speaking to reporters at the end of the visit, the Power Generation Director of NAWEC Mr. Baba Fatajo said the whole project entails the building of power stations, bringing in generators, construction of transmission lines, transportation of power from the source to the consumers and distribution where consumers can get useful electricity energy supply.

He disclosed that all the necessary materials for the Western Region Electrification Project are already in the country, adding that 44 villages and towns in the region will benefit from the project.

He said considerations are given to the rural people for the procurement of the metres, stating that in the urban areas the base cost for a meter is D6, 500.00, while in the rural areas it is only D3, 000.00.

The government, he went on, have acquired 2 generators each with 6.4 MHz that were installed at Brikama Power Station to uplift NAWEC capacity in the Greater Banjul area, in addition to the Western Region Electrification Project.

According to Mr. Fatajo, funding for the acquisition of the materials will come from Islamic Development Bank, while the government of The Gambia and NAWEC will internally fund the work. He told journalists that there is another project, which is in the offing for the extension of the Rural Electrification Extension Programme (REEP), adding that already a service of a consultant had been secured from India.

According to him, the ECOWAS Bank for Investmentwould provide funding for Investment, through the Indian Line of Credit and the government of The Gambia.

Amine Saad, the Project Manager of Global Trading Group, the main contractors for Western Region Electrification Project promised the government of The Gambia and the people of Western Region that his group would live up to expectations.

The Minister and the delegation then visited the project sites at Ballast Nedam, situated at the entry point into Brikama near Nyambai Forest, Sifoe, Mandinaba and Brikama Power Station. The delegation included the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Energy, Mod Secka and NAWEC's PRO Pierre YS. Silver and other NAWEC officials.