By Makutu Manneh
Energy and Petroleum Minister, Fafa Sanyang, claimed that the narrative on Gambia’s electricity supply in the country is gradually changing.
Speaking at the handing over ceremony of the Gambian-German energy project on Wednesday, Mr. Sanyang said this is due to the support of the Gambian Government partners such as the German Government, EU, World Bank, and other partners.
He said in the past years, the electricity sub-sector was mainly characterized by insufficient generator capacity, limited transmission capacity, and double-digit technical-commercial losses.
The minister said the government of The Gambia through his Ministry exercised patients in order to improve access to reliable, affordable and efficient electricity to all in the country.
“This is exemplified by the positive steps taken by the Government such as the Gambian-German project,” he said.
Mr. Sanyang said the project is focused on four key areas including installation of independent commutation infrastructure and data collection on the transmission network linking the Brikama and Kotu power stations; Provision of quality testing equipment; procurement of more than 1000 kVA generator; and capacity building for NAWEC staff on the operations, protection and maintenance of the new communication system.
“The combination of these measures will enable NAWEC to hold its power plans more reliably to extend the lives of the engines,” he said.
Stephan Roeken Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany in Dakar said no conditions were applied in the implementation since it is a political signal.
He said this was discussed during the German president’s visit to The Gambia and assured their support of The Gambia in its new democratic system.
Mr. Roeken said they also started cooperation in vocational training, police cooperation and supporting the truth commission, and that the Gambian government now has the responsibility to manage NAWEC in the next years.
“We are very confident that NAWEC will do well because we have seen how they manage their limited resources in the past,” he said.
The Gambian-German Energy project is funded by the German Federal Foreign Office, implemented by the GIZ and NAWEC under the leadership of the Gambian Ministry of Energy. The project started in May 2018.
GIZ is a German public-benefit federal government-owned enterprise that supports the German Government and a host of public and private sector clients in a wide variety of areas, including economic development, employment promotion, energy and the environment development and stability of peace and security.