Sorie Fofana: Sierra Leone Telegraph: 2 June 2018:
Since the new SLPP administration came into office in April 2018, the sum of Le29,623,000,000 (Twenty nine Billion, Six hundred and Twenty-three million Leones) has been approved by President Bio, and paid to support the operations of both the Electricity Distribution and Supply Authority (EDSA) and the Electricity Generation and Transmission Company (EGTC).
This payment was made by the Government to ensure reliable supply of electricity. Unfortunately, electricity supply in Freetown remains unsatisfactory.
Why is it that EDSA always relies on the Government for its survival? How can the Government continue to support the operations of EDSA at the expense of other competing areas of interest to the people of this country?
Many people have argued that if the current management team at EDSA is unable to effectively manage the Authority, it should be replaced immediately.
Before this new administration came into office in April 2018, the former Minister of Energy, Henry Macauley (Photo) refused to accept EDSA’s proposal to install smart meters across the capital city of Freetown, as a pilot project.
Henry Macauley selfishly kicked against the installation of smart meters because he wanted Aggreko to bring in their generating machines and make money, at the expense of the state and poor consumers.
EDSA is losing a lot of money from the Maximum Demand Indicator (MDI) customers. These are the big customers that use electricity above the maximum capacity.
The EDSA Management is under pressure from the new administration to raise revenue in order to be able to fund their operations without Government support.
The only way out for EDSA is to bring back the smart meters and install them across the capital city of Freetown. The installation of smart meters will automatically lead to increased revenue for EDSA.
All the faulty Chinese meters that have already been installed in several homes and business houses should be replaced now.
The Management of EDSA should encourage their counterparts at EGTC to invest more money on the expansion of the transmission lines.
The current national grid needs to be overhauled and a proper and transparent way of collecting revenue for EDSA put in place.
We will for now not call for the immediate dissolution of the Management team at EDSA. What we will advocate for right now, is for the top Management team at EDSA to find ways and means to increase revenue collection or else their jobs should not be guaranteed by the new Government.
The reliance of EDSA on the Government for everyday financial support to conduct their daily business is totally unacceptable.
About the author: Sorie Fofana is the editor of the Global Times
Sierra Leone Telegraph Note: Please note typo error. The correct sum total of spending shown on the above document should be Le29.623 Billion