Press Release

TRANSCO CLSG GM BAGS SIGNIFICANT AWARDS IN THE US

Atlanta, GA June 11, 2024 : The General Manager of TRANSCO CLSG has received two distinct awards in the United States for his outstanding contributions to developing the energy sector in West Africa. The prestigious congressional recognition was bestowed on Mr. Mohammed M. Sherif by the State of Georgia’s Black Legislative Caucus, a subset of the State’s General Assembly Legislative body.

At the ceremony held at the Georgia state capitol in Atlanta, in the House Appropriation Chambers, on Monday, June 10, 2024, the Black Legislative Caucus recognized Mr. Sherif as a pivotal figure in the energy sector of West Africa, particularly through his role as the general manager of TRANSCO CLSG since September 2014.

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In separate signed resolutions, Honorable Carl W. Gilliard, Chairman of the Georgia Legislative Black Caucus honored Mr. Sherif as a distinguished African public service leader who has contributed to deepening democracy and promoting parliamentary excellence in leading a successful trans-national organization.

In the second resolution presented by Representative Billy Mitchell of District 88, the Congressional Black Caucus lauded Mr. Sherif for his exemplary leadership and effective public service to West Africa and for improving access to reliable and affordable electricity for millions of people in the Mano River Union.

Both resolutions commended the TRANSCO CLSG General Manager’s leadership for completing the 225kV power transmission line connecting Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea, directly connecting light to the lives of millions and enhancing economic development and energy security in the region.

In response, Mr. Sherif expressed his gratitude to the Black Caucus, General Assembly, and the people of the State of Georgia for the recognition, stating that it was a testament to the hard work and commitment of the TRANSCO CLSG team.

“The CLSG project, with its 1,303 km transmission line and 12 substations, stands as a beacon of progress and hope. It symbolizes what we can achieve when we work together towards a common goal. It is a story of not just infrastructure development, but of human spirit and collective effort. I am proud to share that our project is now operational, providing much-needed electricity to millions, fostering economic growth, and enhancing the quality of life in our region,” the General Manager said in his statement.

The prestigious US Congressional Commendation is reserved for distinguished individuals who have displayed exceptional leadership, impacted lives positively, and advanced development. It is a status bestowed by States in the United States on a foreign individual, whom it considers to be especially admirable or otherwise worthy of the distinction.

The awards ceremony was graced by an array of Georgia State’s lawmakers including Senator Dr. Donzella James (represented by her Special Assistant), Rep. Sandra G. Scott (Chief Deputy Whip), Rep. Segun Adeyina, Rep. Kim Schofield, Rep. Doreen Carter, Rep. Viola Davis, and Honorable Dee Dawkins-Haigle who served as the Chief host of the ceremony.

Energy Independence requires the cooperation of all, GM Sherif asserts.

“The path to true energy independence lies in our cooperation,” observed the General Manager of TRANSCO CLSG. Mr. Mohammed M. Sherif adds that the landmark CLSG project stands as a symbol of what’s possible “when we work together.”

Mr. Sherif was addressing the Energy Roundtable Conference organized by the Ministry of Energy of Sierra Leone and the World Bank, in Freetown on Tuesday, March 19, 2024, under the theme: “Sustainable Energy for All: A Countdown to 2030.” The TRANSCO CLSG Boss emphasized that the 2030 deadline for Sustainable Energy for All demands an immediate action, stressing that progress cannot wait for rural communities and growing industries.

In his statement at the energy trade conference, which was graced by His Excellency President Maada Bio, President of Sierra Leone, Mr. Sherif said TRANSCO CLSG stands ready to deliver reliable, affordable power across the region. “We will operate and maintain the CLSG line as a symbol of our shared progress. We will deepen collaborative partnerships with our neighboring grid operators. We will champion the development of a skilled workforce to manage the energy systems of tomorrow and we will explore creative financing models to build the clean energy infrastructure we deserve,” the General Manager assured.

“Our five operational substations here in Sierra Leone are proof that the CLSG is transforming lives. This legacy project is no longer a blueprint; it’s bringing power and opportunity to millions across our four nations,” Mr. Sherif disclosed and noted that completing the transmission line and substations remains a testament to what “we can achieve together. However, true success lies in using this infrastructure to its fullest potential. In particular, the line is currently being used at 42% of the 200MW available capacity.”

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Mr. Sherif explained some of the bottlenecks in the CLSG project implementation and urged stakeholders to invest in expanding the transmission capacity and generation and consider opportunities like a second circuit along the existing line. He called on the CLSG countries and other stakeholders to harmonize regulations and pricing that reflect the true cost of energy needed to accelerate development.

The TRANSCO CLSG Boss emphasized that the harmonization of regulations will allow easy access to all users, including mining companies, both at the national and regional levels. “We must also honor our payment obligations to ensure the sustainability of the power line,” he pointed out.

Mr. Sherif informed the conference that the CLSG stands as a vital linchpin within WAPP’s bold mission to advance regional energy trade. “It’s a power superhighway, enabling us to share surplus energy, optimize resources, protect against shortages, and reduce reliance on unsustainable energy.” He declared that TRANSCO CLSG remains firmed in its commitment to the transition to sustainable energy. “Our transmission line is the backbone that provides pathways to integrate solar, wind, and hydropower for a cleaner and more resilient CLSG region. The CLSG substations in Sierra Leone are along many renewable energy potentials.”

The 1,303-kilometer high-voltage transmission line, weaving through the four nations including Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, is a testament to the power of regional collaboration. In 2012, a pivotal International Treaty cemented the commitment of the CLSG countries to regional energy integration within the West African Power Pool (WAPP). “Our goals directly support this conference’s aspirations, which include enhanced regional connections, access to electricity for all, socio-economic development, and cost-effective, reliable power.”

The General Manager hailed the unwavering support from stakeholders behind the CLSG project, which include the CLSG national Governments for their steadfast commitment which built the bedrock upon which this endeavor rests; the TRANSCO CLSG Board for their  guidance which has been indispensable throughout and to the Financial and Technical Partners including the World Bank, African Development Bank, European Investment Bank, and KFW Development Bank for their visionary support that made the CLSG dream a reality.

Pres. Boakai visits TRANSCO CLSG HQ, shows strong support to the CLSG project

President Joseph Nyuma Boakai is pleased with development in the CLSG project implementation and has echoed his strong support to ensure TRANSCO CLSG is viable. The Liberian leader also re-echoed his stance on making sure the people of Liberia have improved access to reliable and affordable electricity across the country.

President Boakai paid an important visit to the headquarters of TRANSCO CLSG, where he met with the General Manager, Mohammed M. Sherif, and the senior management team of the multi-donor-funded company in Cocody, Abidjan on Friday, March 8, 2024. The President elucidated the importance of unimpeded electricity to Liberia’s growth.

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A Visit to the Linsan Substation

The newly constructed 225 kV transmission Line and substation in Linsan (Labé region) are undergoing pre-commissioning. Both the Linsan substation and Line will link Guinea’s Kaléta and Souapiti hydroelectric power plants, as well as other facilities, to the West African Power Pool, which includes the long-distance transmission links to Mali, Senegal, The Gambia, Côte d’Ivoire, Liberia, and Sierra Leone.

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The Linsan infrastructure, which has the potential to interconnect seven (7) West African countries, will support the development of the hydropower potential of Guinea while at the same time fostering regional electricity trade to Mali.

As part of the implementation of the CLSG Interconnection Project, which interlinks Cote d’Ivoire with Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea, the management of TRANSCO CLSG along with the Government of the Republic of Guinea on Wednesday, February 28, 2018, formally turned over the Linsan substation site to OMVG (Organisation pour la Mise en du fleuve Gambie) for construction.

Like the CLSG Project, the development objective of the OMVG is to facilitate electricity trade between the Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, and Senegal. The project also forms part of the West African Power Pool (WAPP) transmission network expansion.

 

TRANSCO CLSG expands people’s access to electricity in Guinea

Seven villages in the Nzerekore region, with approximately 18 thousand people have been connected to the CLSG grid. The villages including Yalenzou, Nzao, Bonoumou, Karanah Benzano, Bipa, and Gonon are receiving electricity for the first time in decades.

The connection was secured when TRANSCO CLSG Country Manager of Guinea, Dr. Abdoulaye Keita energized the 33kV feeder line from the Nzerekore substation to the designated villages. The line is dedicated to the rural electrification of communities along the CLSG transmission line.

Following the turning-on ceremony at the Nzerekore substation, Dr. Keita led an array of TRANSCO CLSG team, Guinean local officials, and EDG electricians to turn on the power in two of the villages including Nzao and Karanah. Residents took to the streets to celebrate the historic moment. The connection of these villages will further boost economic activities in the Guinean commercial and economic center, Dr. Keita said.

According to the Country Manager, the process to connect the seven villages to the CLSG grid is part of the TRANSCO CLSG’s social actions under the implementation of the Resettlement Action Plan (RAP) for the beneficiary communities located along the transmission line.

The city of Nzérékoré had been plagued with the lack of electricity for years but the bustling city now has 24-hour electricity from the TRANSCO CLSG grid. With a volume of eleven megawatts (11 MW) per year, the CLSG interconnection line has improved energy demand in the city of N’Zérékoré and its surroundings and is accelerating the region’s socio-economic development.

More businesses, including factories, are returning to the city. According to residents, Nzerekore has become an attractive destination for new business ventures because of the stable electricity. Nzerekore, they say is a city that “Never Sleeps.”

Sidiki Trawally, TRANSCO CLSG Communication, reports

TRANSCO CLSG sensitizes communities along the transmission line on safety measures

TRANSCO CLSG has been sensitizing resident communities along the CLSG transmission line on safety measures such as farming activities within the Right of Way (RoW) corridor, bush fire, illegal logging activities, charcoal production, and mining activities.

From November 9th through the 16th, 2023, TRANSCO CLSG embarked on sensitization and information activities on the Bumbuna to Mano line in Sierra Leone as the CIE O&M prepares to fell trees that pose potential threats to the safety of the line.

The mission was to inform the residents and affected communities about safety measures that have been put in place through the maintenance activities during the operation and maintenance phase of the CLSG interconnection project.

Mr. Germain Paye, TRANSCO CLSG’s Social Safeguard Assistant, who led the mission thanked the affected communities across the CLSG project line for their unwavering support and collaboration during the construction phase. He emphasized that as TRANSCO CLSG transitions into the O&M phase, their support and collaboration will be highly needed. He stressed that the affected communities remain the key players and indefectible stakeholders.

The mission covered the affected communities along Line 6 which runs from the Kenema substation to Mano substation and Line 7 from the Kenema substation to Bikongor.

TRANSCO CLSG concludes TSA Renegotiation meeting in Abidjan

The Management of TRANSCO CLSG has concluded a two-day Transmission Service Agreement (TSA) renegotiation meeting to revise the current Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) and the TSAs to reflect commercial arrangements for inadvertent energy and other relevant matters.

The objective of the meeting was to set a clear basis for the discussions and prepare the parties with the consultant’s intervention. A road map was agreed for further negotiation among the parties.

The TSA renegotiation meeting was held in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire at the Silver Moon Hotel, from Thursday, November 2nd, and concluded on Friday, November 3rd, 2023, with an Aide Memoire signed by participants including the four utilities – CI ENERGIES of Cote d’Ivoire, LEC of Liberia, EDSA of Sierra Leone and EDG of Guinea. The Ministries of Finance and the Ministries of Energy of the four CLSG countries also attended the meeting.

Mr. Bernard W. Jappah, Commercial Director

Mr. Bernard Wleh Jappah, a former Senior Advisor, in the Office of the Executive Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) joins TRANSCO CLSG with a wealth of professional experience. He is a skilled professional with over 20 years of experience in public financial management, commercial management, corporate financial management, operations management, economic & public policy, project management, and high-level contract management.

Mr. Jappah has a natural talent for leading and motivating people to achieve challenging objectives. He has the ability to collaborate with key stakeholders and maintain mutual partnerships. He effortlessly builds team connections and improves policies to help improve operational efficiency and performance of each team member.

Prior to his appointment with TRANSCO CLSG in September 2023, Mr. Jappah worked with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as Senior Advisor to the Executive Director, with oversight responsibility for issues in Liberia and Tanzania, from April 2016 to April 2022. He held similar responsibility for The Gambia. He also worked as Consultant in the Office of the Executive Governor, Central Bank of Liberia, with primary responsibility for IMF and World Bank affairs.  

Prior to joining the IMF, Mr. Jappah led Public Financial Management Reforms for the Government of Liberia, in his role as PFM Reform Coordinator and Project Manager for the multi-donor supported project, IPFMRP. He held this position from 2008- April 2016. Other senior management positions held by Mr. Jappah include Operations Manager for UNFPA with responsibility for finance, procurement, staffing, and audit, and Country Financial and Credit Controller for DHL Liberia and DHL Ghana (a.i.).

On academics, he graduated from the University of the District of Columbia (US), with an MPA degree (public policy concentration), and Cuttington University (LR), with an MBA in Finance. Mr. Jappah also attained a host of diplomas and certificates from top international institutions including Harvard University and Duke University. He also participated in major economic policy and international cooperation missions on behalf of the Government of Liberia, and was a leading resource on the IMF Extended Credit Facility (ECF) Arrangement for assigned countries  .

Mr. Jappah is happily married with four (4) children.

 

TRANSCO CLSG holds 3-day workshop to review billing documents with utilities

TRANSCO CLSG is holding a three-day workshop with stakeholders, particularly the national utilities, to review the current billing documents to ensure a better understanding by CLSG’s client countries and to obtain a consensual document for a comprehensive billing of energy and transmission services.

The workshop which runs from September 12th to the 14th of September 2023 in Monrovia, Liberia at the Cape Hotel enables an in-depth knowledge of the various supporting documents and the sharing of comments from all actors.

As a result of the rapid increase in the power transit on the national networks of CLSG countries, the multiplication of delivery points, and the activation of new injection points due to successive synchronizations with production centers in Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea, the preparation of invoicing documents has become more complex.

The specific objectives of the workshop are to ensure a better understanding of billing data and the related supporting documents; adopt the revised invoicing methodology and subsequent set of supporting documents and adopt any amendments to the PPA and TSA contracts.