Dr. Fatou Lamin Faye, the Basic Education Minister, on Monday inaugurated a state-of-the-art new power station for Basse, Upper River Region, under the Rural Electrification Extension Project (REEP).
The project, which includes the installation of two power plants at Farafenni and Basse, is funded through the Ecowas Bank for Investment and Development (EBID) and the Government of The Gambia at a tune of over US$20M. It is meant to provide electricity supply to 44 rural communities.
In her inaugural address, Minister Faye thanked God for the numerous blessings and developments registered in the last 22 years. “As we celebrate the 22nd anniversary of the 22nd July Revolution, let us reflect on our successes and challenges and return to Allah to continue to shower his grace and blessings on all our efforts. As Allah-fearing people, we depend on Him [Allah] for sustenance and to develop our country,” she affirmed.
She said government places a high premium on the provision of the necessary infrastructure for rural people. This, she said, is manifested by the numerous infrastructure projects that URR and the entire country have benefited from the Jammeh administration.
Energy development and expansion, according to Dr. Faye, are at the centre of the sector’s transformational agenda since the advent of the July 22nd Revolution in 1994.
Access, reliability and affordability, she added remain at the center of the National Energy Policy. “We will continue on this trajectory to ensure that water and electricity are provided to every part of the country. We have always recognised the vast economic potentials of Basse being the second capital of the country,” she affirmed, adding that the new electricity project would help place the town at its rightful position.
She renewed the call for private sector participation in the energy sector to complement government’s efforts.
M.O Njie, Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum lauded the project, saying it would greatly transform the beneficiaries.
Ousman Bokum of EBID thanked the contractor and consultant for a good job and the President for developing The Gambia. The Ecowas Bank, he said was proud to be among the financiers of the project and would always be honoured to partner with the government.
Ebrima Sanyang, the Managing Director of NAWEC, spoke at length on the benefits that come with the new power plant. The plant, he said, would not only increase access to electricity but also the durability of power supply.
Alhaji Omar Sampo Ceesay, Governor of URR recounted the poor power supply in the past. He said his region has benefited a lot from the Revolution and reaffirmed their unwavering loyalty.
Chief Hammeh Minteh Krubally of Basse commended the Jammeh administration for greatly transforming the country, while assuring him of their continued support to APRC government.
by Alieu Ceesay &
Arfang Camara on Tour