Sierra Leone Telegraph: 12 August 2018:
In 2012, officials in the APC government of former president Koroma entered into negotiations with the American company – Joules Corporation, who had promised to invest $800 million in developing Sierra Leone’s Bumbuna hydro-electricity dam.
But sadly, the negotiations with Joules Corporation fell through, as greed and corruption once again reared their ugly head and got into the way of what could have been an opportunity for Bumbuna to have the capacity to generate and supply reliable electricity throughout the whole of Sierra Leone, with plenty in reserve for exporting to neighbouring countries.
Fast forward to 2018, the people of Sierra Leone are now hearing of another promise of investment for Bumbuna Phase Two. This time, from another American company – SELI Hydropower, with whom the Bio led government are negotiating to invest $800.
But will incompetence, corruption and greed get into the way this time around?
This is a report by Kanji Daramy:
It has officially emerged that the construction of a second Bumbuna Hydro-Dam, has attracted an Eight Hundred Million United States Dollars from a private farm known as SELI Hydropower.
This huge investment in Energy under the New Direction government came to light during the official handing over ceremony of the land site, meant for the construction of the largest Dam for Bumbuna Phase Two in Kondembaia town – Dian Chiefdom, Koinadugu District, Friday August 10th 2018.
Whilst making an official statement marking the occasion, the widely held result-oriented Energy and Power Minister – Alhaji Ibrahim Kanja Sesay, informed the mammoth gathering that his New Direction government as with education, has the electrification of every corner of Sierra Leone – North, West, East to South as a fundamental priority.
Therefore, he said his Ministry shortly after his appointment alongside his Deputy – Dr Tunde Eldred Taylor and Senior Members of the Ministry, went on the rampage to attract private investment for the Energy sector.
As a result, he said, SELI Hydropower expressed great interest to invest. This investment, Alhaji Kanja Sesay said, would serve as a great benefit to the country and Dian Chiefdom in particular.
He stated that individuals living around the Dam area will be relocated to a comfortable and safe location. Over four thousand jobs would come along with this Bumbuna Phase Two Project – Minister Kanja Sesay said.
On his part and whilst joyfully handing over the prepared documents of the land to the Minister of Energy and Power on behalf of his People, Paramount Chief Sheiku Magba Koroma praised the Almighty Allah for yet another opportunity in his Chiefdom.
P C Magba Koroma revealed that Dian Chiefdom was rich in gold, titanium and iron ore. And now, he said, the SLPP government under His Excellency Rtd Brig Julius Maada Bio through his hard-working Energy and Power Minister, has chosen Dian for the construction of the largest Dam ever in the history of the Country.
On his part, the Executive Officer and shareholder of SELI Hydropower – Mr Beckly informed his audience that his Company was in partnership with credible investors based in the United States of America.
He explained that after a long and unnecessary delay on the part of the former APC government to build Bumbuna Phase Two, the new SLPP government through the Energy and Power Minister – Alhaji Kanja Sesay, has made it possible in a very short period of time; reiterating the benefits highlighted by the Minister.
The occasion was attended by other Ministers from various Ministries and departments, including the Minister of Local Government and Rural Development – Lawyer Anthony Brewah, the Deputy Attorney General and Minister of Justice Abdulai Bangura, the Deputy Minister of Information and Communication Solomon Jamiru, and the Resident Minister North Abu Abdulai Koroma.
Also present were the newly appointed Director General of Elelctricity Distribution and Supply Agency (EDSA) – Mr Milton Ngebai and host of other senior members of both EDSA and the Electricity Generation and Transmission Company (EGTC).