Inadequate Funds Hinder Rural Electrification, Says VP Njie-Saidy

Saturday, September 8, 2007

The Vice President and Secretary of State for Women’s Affairs Mrs Isatou Njie-Saidy has said inadequate funds have slowed the progress of the rural electrification project.
She made this revelation in an answer to a question Honourable Njai Darboe of Jarra West Constituency had asked her.

He had asked why the Rural Electrification Project, which had already covered most of the villages in Jarra West, was yet to be extended to the Kabada area of Jarra West and other places such as Jenoi, Sikunda, Jiffin and Jabbisa.

The Vice President explained that due to insufficient funds for the Rural Electrification Programme the course of the programme would take longer than initially expected.
According to the Vice President, the underlying criteria will be the technical feasibility, economic and financial viability.
She added that the government of The Gambia recognised the importance of electricity in the socio-economic development of this country, which was why it was committed to electrifying the nation. “However, you will agree that this undertaking is capital intensive,” she said.

In response to a question asked by Honourable Kabba Touray of the Lower Saloum Constituency, the Vice President said villages in Lower Saloum would be part of the distribution of electricity and would be highly considered in the next Phase of the Rural Electrification Programme.

She told the House that the entire country would eventually be electrified.
According to her, the Rural Electrification Project was being done in phase because of insufficient funds.
“However, due to scarcity of funds, the program is being implemented in Phases,” she told Honourable Ousman Bah of Sabach Sanchal Constituency who had asked whether his constituency would also enjoy the rural electrification project.

She added, “I am not in a position to inform you as to when specifically the programme will reach your constituency.”

Author: By Abba Gibba, Baboucarr Senghore & Ya Sainey Gaye
Source: The Point