The provision of vital social infrastructure is undoubtedly a fundamental prerequisite for the advancement of any country especially developing countries like ours. If anything, highly functional infrastructure determines growth in the different sectors and in different ways. For The Gambia, it has been a very encouraging trend; a success story that continues to gain momentum.
In what has also been momentous weeks of commissioning of projects recently, the cosmopolitan town of Farafenni in the North Bank Region, also witnessed the inauguration of the Farafenni Power Station under the Rural Electrification Extension Project, REEP.
In fact, the overall goal of the project, which was reportedly conceived years ago, constitutes the installation of two power plants in Farafenni and Basse. This is a fitting investment by the Government of The Gambia at a whopping tune of over Twenty Million Dollars. Among its goals is to roll out electricity supply to some forty-four communities.
Also of crucial significance is the quest of this new intervention to discourage rural-urban migration, with a view to making young people stay in their native communities where they could be very instrumental in the development of their own villages.
Beyond that drive, this newly commissioned project could also allow young people to fully engage themselves in electricity driven trades like welding and electrical installation in rural Gambia.
The prospect of that scenario alone will help ensure productivity on the part of the youth whilst at the same time allowing them to be less dependent on others.
The generation, transmission and distribution of electricity are key to commerce and given that both Farafenni and Basse are not only strategically situated but being major hubs of business and other commercial activities in the North Bank Region and Upper River Region, their respective local economies could reap a lot.
As the lifeblood of economies the world over, any investment in power or the lack of it, could have serious implications for other areas, particularly the service sector. As it stands, more communities are poised to tap into the huge potentials that come with electricity supply.
We commend President Jammeh for yet another transformational project with huge potential for human development and national progress.