The capital of Sierra Leone, Freetown, home to millions of Sierra Leoneans has been connected and is now enjoying the much-awaited 24-hour electricity from the CLSG grid. “People are upbeat and there is excitement all over town,” says Freetown resident, Sulaiman Kamara, who is also TRANSCO CLSG Environmental Assistant.
TRANSCO CLSG project reached this landmark achievement on Thursday, July 7, 2022, following the successful synchronization of the Sierra Leone network with the CLSG network, as well as the effective energization of the Bikongor and Bumbuna substations. TRANSCO CLSG is supplying electricity to Freetown from an injection point in Bumbuna, which is about 260 km away from the capital. Freetown has been importing up to a peak of 50 MW from the CLSG network, according to Erick Achi, the Engineering Coordinator of TRANSCO CLSG.
In December 2021, the President of Sierra Leone, Dr Julius Maada Bio officially switched on the Côte d’Ivoire-Liberia-Sierra Leone-Guinea electricity interconnection line at Tilorma, Kenema, bringing power to his political heartland in the south and east of the country. Moments after the President turned on the light, the city went into frenzy as residents jubilated the outcome of the historic ceremony.
The Project Director, Mr Etienne BAILLY highlighted that “This is a major achievement in the CLSG project implementation. It means that electricity can now be transmitted from CI Energies in Côte d’Ivoire to Bo, Kenema, Kono Bumbuna and Freetown (via the EGTC’s 161kV HT line)”. This is not a small measure that will help with the provision of a sustainable and reliable electricity supply to the people of Sierra Leone,” said Eng. Paul Saffa, TRANSCO CLSG Country Manager.
With approximately 530km transmission line across Sierra Leone, the 225 kV power line is serving Bo and Kenema towns, with ongoing plans for the grid to serve other districts, including Pujehun, Kenema, Kono, Tonkolili, Koinadugu, Bombali, Kambia and Karene.
The General Manager of TRANSCO CLSG, Mohammed M. Sherif is pleased with the development in Freetown. He notes that by switching on the light, the Government of Sierra Leone offers hope for a better life, improved health, and education, alleviating poverty, and fostering sustainable socio-economic development.
Sierra Leone is the first among the CLSG countries to sign both the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) and the Transmission Service Agreement (TSA) and started trade on the line. The General Manager says it’s a clear manifestation of the President’s leadership role played in ensuring that this transformative CLSG project is achieved for the betterment of all.
Meanwhile, the Management of Electricity Distribution and Supply Authority (EDSA) of Sierra Leone is informing the general public that the interconnection works, testing and energization of the TRANSCO CLSG Line at Bumbuna Substation to Freetown has been completed.
In its Press Release issued Wednesday, July 13, 2022, the Authority said it will ensure Freetown benefits from a more reliable access to electricity from the CLSG supply grid through the transmission line that have been constructed from Bumbuna to Freetown and other parts of the Northern Region.
On that note, the ESDA wants the public to know that the CLSG interconnection project aimed at supplying adequate, reliable and sustainable electric power has successfully landed in Freetown.
EDSA said that with this TRANSCO CLSG development, it now has three (3) sources of power generation: (Karpowership, Bumbuna and TRANSCO), which will certainly reduce load shedding activity and would also compensate for any unforeseen drop in power generation from either of its power producers.
Meanwhile, construction works will soon be completed at Fadugu (Yiben) and Kamakwei Substations in the Northern Province this year to enhance electricity supply to the Northern part of Sierra Leone, EDSA added, and assured the general public of its continued effort to ensuring the unhindered supply of electricity to its valued customers, including expansion to unserved communities and maintenance of its network distribution infrastructure.