October 2, 2022

Many Sierra Leoneans who have closely followed the unbundling of the country’s energy sector have stated that Sierra Leoneans are yet to enjoy anything sustainable from such an arrangement.
The essence for new arrangements is for such to have an impact on service delivery on citizens for whom such services are provided for.
Since the establishment of the Electricity Distribution and Supply Authority (EDSA) and the Electricity Generation and Transmission Authority (EGTC) much has not change from what use to obtain during the days of the National Power Authority (NPA) in terms of the delivery of sustainable and uninterrupted power to residents of Freetown and other regional cities.
Critical challenges such as theft of electricity, weak and aging distribution and supply network, provision of huge subsidies to EDSA by government are amongst the many challenges the sector is still grappling with.The country still has around 14% of accessibility of its citizens to energy distribution.
Minister of Energy, Alhaji Kanji Sesay disclosed to journalists quite recently in Freetown that government is investing hugely in subsidies to EDSA amounting to billions of Leones and this he stated is very unsustainable.
The Energy Minister has also revealed that EDSA has not been able to generate revenues to finance its operations unless government intervenes in the form of subsidies.
He attributed this to the thieving of electricity, old and aging transmission and distribution networks amongst several other factors.
The Energy Minister could not say when such an unsustainable and haphazard arrangements would come to an end.
He has only indicated that the maintenance of the distribution networks which he says is on course in Freetown and Bo lines would increase the generation capacity of EDSA to be able to access more Sierra Leoneans.
So in actual fact what have we benefitted from the unbundling of the country’s energy sector leading to the creation of EDSA and EGTC.
Despite all of these issues the new trend that is currently making waves is the saboteur attitude of some staff of EDSA towards government desire for Sierra Leoneans to have sustainable and interrupted energy amidst the challenges.
Few Months ago the hardworking Resident Minister North West, Hon Isata Abdulia and other top SLPP operatives in Lungi arrested some senior EDSA staff who have stolen huge quantum’s of fuel allegedly belonging to the Authority after Lungi had gone down months without light.
The suspects who were very senior officials of EDSA at the region were whisked to CID in Freetown after they were caught with gallons of fuel.Only God knows what had happened to this matter.
Minister of Energy and Power and his team had just ended a visit in Bo to assess EDSA structures and facilities and also asses the possible reasons for the low supply of power to the region over the last few months.
The Minister was very much perturbed that huge volumes of EDSA cables worth millions of dollars were carted away right in the nose of the Sierra Leone Police at New Police Barracks Bo.
This was disheartening for the Energy Minister who at least was not expecting that such an expensive government assets would be stolen in the full view of the Police.
A week later reports are now coming in that the Head of Operations EDSA, for the Southern Region and four others are currently helping the police in Bo after another huge consignment of EDSA cables were also reportedly missing at the New Police Barracks area in Bo.
A group of Youths and Police Officers acting on a tip off have arrested these EDSA personnel right at the scene.The EDSA Operations Personnel had dismissed the claims.
The developments are pointing out to the views held by many that it is not possible for the theft of EDSA equipment to carry on or flourish without the support of people working for EDSA.This is also true for theft of meters which is also on the increase in most communities in the past few months.
The Minister of Energy and many people within government including the Head of Government Outreach ,Abubakar Joe Sesay have long been of the view that there are saboteurs at EDSA and that government should take appropriate actions.
If EDSA whose responsibility is to supply and distribute electricity to Sierra Leoneans is now having some of its staff members accused of sabotaging government the Energy Minister should act promptly by wedding the rotten eggs from the system.
Electricity is a political hot potato commodity and hence government should not tolerate any sabotage around the provision of such a basic service to the people of Sierra Leone.