Press Release

TRANSCO CLSG Board confirms new member

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The Board of Director of TRANSCO CLSG has confirmed Mr. El Hadji Abdou Sakho as an independent member of the Board representing francophone West Africa. He replaces the late Seydina Issa Kane of Senegal, who died last December 2019 following a period of protracted illness.

During its 23rd meeting on Monday, December 8, 2020, the Chairman of the Board of Directors, Mr. Amidou Traore welcomed the newest member, also a Senegalese, and challenged him to be strong and unwavering in supporting the implementation of the CLSG project. “We congratulate you and welcome you on board. All of us agreed that you join us based on our conviction that you will bring value to the TRANSCO CLSG.”

The General Manager of TRANSCO CLSG, Mohammed M. Sherif, addressing the meeting virtually, also congratulated Mr. Sakho, on his appointment as an independent member of the Board for francophone West Africa. “I have no doubts that your extensive experience in the region will be invaluable to the Board as we endeavor to deliver on our goal to deliver reliable, sustainable, and affordable electricity to our beloved CLSG countries and beyond.”

In response, Mr. Sahko who spoke via Zoom said he was delighted to work with the team of TRANSCO CLSG. “To have been given the opportunity by WAPP (West African Power Pool) to serve in this capacity. I thank you for welcoming me on the team.”

He promised to support the works of the Board as well as TRANSCO CLSG management to ensure reliable and sustainable electricity is delivered. “I will help support the short- and long-term activities of TRANSCO CLSG to ensure our people get electricity. I will work diligently to improve the access condition of our population to energy.”

 

President Weah reaffirms commitment to CLSG project

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A 15-min video, documenting 87 percent progress in the implementation of the CLSG interconnection project has got authorities in Liberia pumped up as they reaffirmed total commitment to the project.

“This is great news for Liberia,” exclaimed Liberia’s Finance Minister Samuel Tweah, who watched the short documentary at the TRANSCO CLSG’s Country Office in Congo Town, Monrovia during a meeting with TRANSCO CLSG General Manager recently.

“Electricity is one of our priorities under our development agenda,” an elated Minister Tweah asserted.

The Liberian government, through the office of the Finance Minister has been very supportive of the CLSG project as Liberia continues to fulfil its financial obligations to the project.

Following the Congo Town meeting, the General Manager of TRANSCO CLSG met with His Excellency, President George Weah where he briefed the Liberian leader on the progress made in the CLSG project implementation. “We will begin to commission the line in December 2020,” Mr. Mohammed M. Sherif informed the President, who looked excited. Mr. Sherif said TRANSCO CLSG will begin to energize the transmission line in Liberia and into Sierra Leone in December 2020.

PICTURES (Place mouse on picture to see caption)

Pres. Weah

The TRANSCO CLSG boss showcased the video that captivated the full attention of the Liberian leader, and two of his top cabinet ministers, including the Minister of Finance, Samuel Tweah and Minister of State for Presidential Affairs, Nathaniel McGill.

Following Mr. Sherif’s presentation of the high gains in the CLSG project implementation, the President expressed delight that the project has reached such a remarkable milestone. He recalled the project at the stage of documentation when he served as a Senator and member of the senate standing committee on ECOWAS.

In a country undergoing reconstruction, the Liberian leader has made access to energy for all Liberians a credo. President Weah underlined the urgent need for stable and reliable electricity in Liberia. He expressed his happiness for the ongoing CLSG interconnection project which interconnects the electric grid of Cote d’Ivoire to Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea.

The height of the President’s enthusiasm was that commissioning of the line will be possible in December 2020 and that the villages and towns along the CLSG line will be electrified directly from the line through the shield wire system.

Meanwhile, the General Manager of TRANSCO CLSG is urging the government of Liberia to engage the donor partners, especially the World Bank to prioritize the expansion of the national network, not only for the capitol of Monrovia but also for the provincial cities and towns around the CLSG substations. He informed President Weah about the strategic location of the Botota Substation, which will cover the Southeast and the Northwestern parts of Liberia.

The General Manager thanked President Weah and the government of Liberia for taking the lead in the implementation of the CLSG project by the timely approvals of relevant documents and the issuance of permits, passes, customs clearance, etc. He recalled Liberia was at the bottom of the implementation trail from the beginning of the project but has since surpassed other CLSG member countries in fulfilling its obligations to the project implementation.

Mr. Sherif called on the Weah Administration to ensure that the outstanding requirements are met in time in the wake of the schedule for commission, such as the signing of the Power Purchase Agreement, (PPA), TSA, etc. by the national utility.

The West African Interconnection Project between Côte d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea (CLSG Project) is expected to strengthen energy trade between these countries.

 

TRANSCO CLSG building capacity of EPA, FDA, LEC

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As part of the implementation of the CLSG Project’s Environmental and Social Management Plan (ESMP) activities, TRANSCO CLSG is holding a weeklong training workshop to build the capacity of key actors in the energy and environmental sectors.

The training workshop, which began on Monday, October 5, 2020 is being held in Monrovia, with Dr. Koffa T. Morris, Liberian Environmentalist and Disaster Management Expert as the Chief Facilitator.

In consistent with a request made by CLSG countries, TRANSCO CLSG and the Donors approved the training workshop for the key actors including the Environmental and Protection Agency (EPA), Forestry Development Agency (FAD) and Liberia Electricity Corporation (LEC) on the monitoring of Health, Safety and Environmental Management in Projects and Programs.

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The training aims to enable participants achieve the following objectives:

  • Acquire the necessary skills for the preparation, the approval and the implementation of the ESIA, ESMP and Construction ESMP for a project or program;
  • Acquire the necessary skills for the Management and the Monitoring of the Environmental, Hygiene, Health, Safety component during the implementation of the project or the program;
  • Develop and improve knowledge of International and Donors Environmental Policies, Procedures and standards (World Bank, AfDB, Kf’vy and EIB);
  • Acquire the necessary skills for the Management and the Monitoring of the Environmental, Hygiene, Health and Safety Component during the implementation of the transmission line project or program.

The General Manager of TRANSCO CLSG, Mohammed M. Sherif is optimistic that following the capacity building workshop, there will be an enhanced collaboration among government institutions and a robust monitoring of environmental health and safety component of the CLSG project by the EPA.

 

TRANSCO CLSG begins commissioning December 2020

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TRANSCO CLSG will begin the phase commissioning of the CLSG interconnection power supply to Liberia and Sierra Leone in December 2020, the General Manager has assured. Mr. Mohammed M. Sherif reiterated that the CLSG interconnection project has achieved 87 percent rate and that more progress is being made on construction sites.

During a high-level meeting with the Minister of Energy of Sierra Leone and the country’s key actors in the energy sector, including representatives of the Ministry of Finance, EDSA and EGTC as well as senior staff of the Ministry of Energy on Monday, October 5, 2020, Mr. Mohammed M. Sherif assured the government and people of Sierra Leone that the Kenema substation will be energized.

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He disclosed that the substations in Yekepa, Buchanan and Mano in Liberia, as well as the substations in Kenema, Bikongor and Bumbuna in Sierra Leone would be commissioned in December 2020.

The General Manager commended the Minister Alhaji Kanja Sesay for his unflinching support to the ongoing CLSG project. He said that the firm commitment exhibited by the government through the Minister Sesay puts Sierra Leone in the lead in terms of project implementation effectiveness. Mr. Sherif noted that the Ministry of Finance of Sierra Leone has been very supportive to the ongoing project.

The General Manager pointed out some of the setbacks in the CLSG project implementation including the coronavirus pandemic which derailed the swift implementation of the project. He pondered whether the government of Sierra Leone is prepared to receive and distribute the power supply when the electricity is delivered.

“Do you have the needed capacity to absorb the CLSG electricity?” the General Manager asked.

Mr. Sherif encouraged the government of Sierra Leone to get a fair commitment to conclude the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) on time so that the intake of the 27MW of electricity supply from TRANSCO CLSG would be materialized.

Meanwhile, Minister Sesay has set up a robust technical team at his Ministry headed by a veteran in the energy sector to look into the pre and post commissioning activities and to make sure the process is unhindered. He reiterated his country’s firm commitment to commission the CLSG Interconnection Power Supply to electrify Bo and Kenema respectively come December 2020.

Minister Kanja Sesay urged his technical team to come up with a plan that will ensure the country’s full preparedness to utilize the CLSG power supply. He expressed his anticipation for the commissioning of the CLSG power supply to electrify Bo and Kenema in December 2020.

Minister Sesay explained that H E. President Maada Bio is eager to electrify the country and that the CLSG power supply would be effective for the people of Bo and Kenema respectively. He thanked the management of TRANSCO CLSG for their steadfastness on the ongoing project.

The Financial Secretary representing the Ministry of Finance, Sahr Jusu called on the Ministry of Energy to work expeditiously and come up with a plan that will speed up government’s own commitment to funding the ongoing project.

According to him, he held discussions with the energy ministry, EDSA and EGTC to craft a plan that is required to get the 161-transmission line energized to supply electricity across the country. He assured Minister Kanja Sesay and the TRANSCO CLSG delegation that he would approve the disbursement of the initial $750,000US to the Ministry of Energy as part of government’s own commitment to fund the ongoing project.

 

TRANSCO CLSG addresses claims in the line corridor

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TRANSCO CLSG has been addressing numerous claims received from a cross-section of persons affected by the project (PAPs) in Nimba County, who complained they were not compensated for their farms within the transmission line two corridor that is being constructed by EPC contractors, Bouygues.

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Upon receipt of the claims, TRANSCO CLSG swiftly sent a verification team headed by its Social Safeguard Assistant, Germain Paye on September 14, 2020 with the objective to verify the claims and seek resolution.

Meanwhile, the claims verification team carried out its mandate within the Bouygues line 2 from Yekepa substation in Nimba County to the Guinea border. The mission concluded its work on Saturday, October 3, 2020. “Mission was successful,” Paye said.

According to him, most of the reported claims could not be verified because the farms in question were not found. He said a total of 215 claims that were reported, only 10 farms were found to be legit. The verification process was carried out along with the full participation of the claimers, the local administrative and traditional authorities of Nimba County.

 

CLSG Project creates 31k plus jobs

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The Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea interconnection project has created a total of 31,227 direct jobs and 3,726 indirect jobs from the local employment, the General Manager of TRANSCO CLSG has disclosed.

Mr. Mohammed M. Sherif said those employed are from the beneficiary countries and that number is expected to grow as the construction phase of the project continues.

The General Manager also said the ESMP component of the CLSG interconnection project remains compliant with donor guidelines and national regulations.

He explained that with the outbreak of COVID-19, TRANSCO CLSG prepared a COVID-19 response strategy that was implemented at the headquarters, country, and field offices, as well as by the EPC Contractors and Owners Engineer.

However, the General Manager disclosed that the CLSG project implementation phase recorded 21 positive cases out of 99 employees tested as at July 31, 2020 in Liberia. The 21 positive cases were treated, fully recovered, and discharged from the various treatment centers.

He said the reforestation activity has been completed in Côte d’Ivoire, Sierra Leone and Guinea and it is ongoing in Liberia. To date, the CLSG Donors and Environmental Protection Agencies (EPA) have conducted ten (10) supervision missions and eighteen (18) monitoring exercises respectively in EHS (Environmental, Health and Safety) activities along the construction sites.

For the Resettlement Action Plan (RAP) component of the CLSG project, compensation of persons affected by the project (PAPs) have been completed, and the entire line corridor and substation locations handed over to EPC Contractors in the four (4) countries.

For access roads, compensation of PAPs has also been completed in Côte d’Ivoire and Sierra Leone. However, the travel restrictions and closure of land borders arising from COVID-19 hampered the valuation of assets for access roads in Liberia and Guinea. It is envisaged that with the easing of these restrictions, the compensation for assets within the access roads will resume.

The grievance management process has been robust as 98% of the complaints recorded in affected communities were addressed successfully, the General Manager explained. According to him, stakeholder engagements and information and awareness campaigns have enabled the smooth implementation of the CLSG project without significant disruptions.

 

Thousands grace schools, clinic dedication in Cote d’Ivoire

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Thousands of residents in villages in the Tonkpi region of Man and Danane were the happiest when two newly constructed and renovated schools and a clinic were turned over to local government authorities by TRANSCO CLSG on Monday, 28 September 2020.

The villages of Gouagonopleu in Sangouiné sub-prefecture, Man department, Féapleu in the Kouanwoulé sub-prefecture and Blapleu in the Mahapleu sub-prefecture in Danané department were recipients of these modern social infrastructures.

MR. BAILLY’S SPEECH IN FRENCH:

Discours DPUI_Cérémonie de remise des clés de l’EPP

These facilities were constructed and renovated by EPC contractors, BOUYGUES ENERGIES & SERVICES, as part of its corporate social responsibility to the people in the CLSG project impacted regions. TRANSCO CLSG Director of the Project, Etienne Bailly, handed the keys over to local authorities and visited various infrastructure built or rehabilitated, for the benefit of the people of Gouagonopleu, Feapleu and Blapleu.

In his keynote statement on behalf of the General Manager of TRANSCO CLSG, Mr. Bailly called on the residents to make maximum use of the facilities and ensure the kids receive quality education. According to Bailly, the rehabilitation and construction of public primary schools provide a healthier learning environment for children in the beneficiary villages and neighboring communities.

“For teachers, these schools are now more pleasant and friendly working environments. Let these facilities improve the quality of life of the communities affected by the CLSG project,” he said. The TRANSCO CLSG Executive called on the parents to invest in their children’s school environment and in the educational project that will be put in place by teachers.”

PHOTOS:

In Gouagonopleu

Mr. Bailly used the occasion to express TRANSCO CLSG gratitude to the Prefect of the Tonkpi Region, Prefect of the Department of Man and to the entire prefectural body for their support to the CLSG project. “As you know, the CLSG project was born from the will of the four countries – Côte d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, to put together their resources and address the common energy crisis.

In Feapleau:

The CLSG project construction works, he disclosed, are well advanced despite challenges including the Ebola health crisis in 2014-2015, and currently the Coronavirus pandemic. “The Overall progress is estimated at 87% and the progress of the first section from Côte d’Ivoire to Liberia exceeds 95%. The first commissioning dates of the line from Man are expected by end of the year, beginning of December 2020,” the Project Director explained.

“All this progress has been made possible thanks to the support of our administrative and local authorities, and the continued support of our valiant people who have embraced the CLSG project. Very big thanks to the four Governments of Côte d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, who have granted equipment and free movements of workers during this period of crisis when borders are still closed.”

In Blapleu

Mr. Bailly also thanked the national organizations responsible for the monitoring of the implementation of the ESMP and RAP, including the members of the National Committee and those of the Local Committees in Man and Danané, and the Claims Management Committee for their constant support throughout the compensation process and the turnover of the project line corridors.

 

CLSG project implementation hits 87% – GM declares

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The General Manager of TRANSCO CLSG, Mohammed M. Sherif says significant progress has been made in the. construction works of the CLSG interconnection project, with an overall progress rate of 87% which was achieved at the end of August 2020. He said further progress has been made since then.

The construction of the section of the transmission line from Man (Cote d’Ivoire) through Liberia to Yiben (Sierra Leone) is almost complete. Three out of five substations in Sierra Leone and four out of five substations in Liberia have reached completion stage, the head of TRANSCO CLSG disclosed.

Addressing the 22nd seating of the company’s Board of Directors on Monday, September 21, 2020, which was held virtually due to the current Covid-19 pandemic and its related travel restrictions, Mr. Sherif said the SVC (Static Var Compensator used primarily for reactive power support and voltage control) at Man substation has reached completion stage.

He also informed the Board that the SCADA Back up on the Man site is nearly completed. SCADA is an acronym for Supervisory Control and Date Acquisition which is used to monitor and control of the plant. “Inspection of the facilities and the pre-commissioning tests have started,” he disclosed.

The General Manager furthers that while TRANSCO CLSG continues to make significant progress in the construction of the transmission line, management is  constrained to push back the commissioning date of the line to December 2020 due to the adverse impact of COVID-19 on the project. He said in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, management engaged the EPC Contractors and deployed a recovery plan to ensure that the new commissioning target is achieved.

The General Manager said TRANSCO CLSG’s main priority for the rest of 2020 is to complete and energize the section of the transmission line from Man to Bumbuna and deliver electricity to Liberia and Sierra Leone.

TRANSCO CLSG will conclude the recruitment of the temporary O&M (Operation and Maintenance) operator by October 2020 for a period of six months, while also pursuing the recruitment of the permanent O & M operator.

 

Chairman Traore hails donors, stakeholders for support to CLSG project

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The Chairman of the Board of Directors of TRANSCO CLSG, Hon. Amidou Traoré is commending donor partners for their support to the CLSG project implementation. In his opening remarks at the start of the 22nd seating of the Board of Directors virtually, on Monday, September 21, 2020, Chairman Traore thanked the Management of TRANSCO CLSG for keeping the project implementation on track despite the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Chairman, who is the Director-General, CI-Energies emphasized that in order for the CLSG project to be achieved, it will take the collective efforts of donors and other partners and key stakeholders in making the project a reality.

Chairman Traore furthered that the project would impact the lives of inhabitants of beneficiary countries, particularly Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea.

He maintained that significant progress has been made in the CLSG project implementation, despite the outbreak of corona virus which created delays. However, the Chairman assured that the project remains on course to connect light to lives.

Board members, including the Secretary General of the West African Power Pool (WAPP), Mr. Siengui A. Ki are in attendance.

The General Manager, Mohammed M. Sherif, in his statement, reported on the progress and challenges in the project implementation amidst the coronal virus pandemic and other challenges faced by the company during the year 2020.

The General Manager also outlined plans for the rest of the year and presented the key items that require the consideration and approval of the Board.

The General Manager, in his statement expressed TRANSCO CLSG’s deepest condolences to the Chairman, and the CI-Energies family for the sudden passing away of Mr. Tanoe, the Secretary General of CI-Energies who in diverse ways contributed to the TRANSCO CLSG institutional setup and participated in the activities of the Board through the Technical Committee.