Gambia: Energy for Development

The language of the contemporary world, since the Industrial Revolution, is about energy. It has undoubtedly become the engine of industrialization and economic growth.

Thankfully, this is a fact that the APRC government is cognizant of, given that no meaningful development is possible in the absence of a vibrant energy sector.

And like agriculture, the President Jammeh has equally attached importance to this sector; and the result of what has become a revolution is being felt right across the entire length and breadth of the nation. It has not been an easy task though. But courage, determination and resilience have been crucial in this development.

The commissioning of the electrification project in the West Coast Region is another significant step towards materializing the energy ambitions of the leadership of the country. The development has come at the right time considering the huge importance attached to electricity, and given the fact that we are fast approaching the year 2020. It also shows the commitment of the leadership to sustainable development of the country.

We need not mention how far the country has come in the quest to ensure adequate and reliable electricity supply. Even the younger generation is aware that before 1994, load shedding was the order of the day in the country, with the electricity supply far below standard of home consumption. That was in spite of the constant switching of ownership of the country’s only major utilities provider. The electrification of the country began with the doing away of load shedding in the Greater Banjul Area, as the capacity of the electricity supplied was greatly improved.

What is even more pleasing about the project is that the West Coast Region would be a beneficiary.

The development is fundamental because a principal requirement for realising Vision 2020 is the availability of reliable, efficient and affordable energy services to the populace, since it serves as a vital component of the necessary enabling environment for a private sector-led growth and development. The fact that energy is being extended to other communities apart from the commercial centres in the country proves that we have come a long way.

Furthermore, the move has the potential to enhance our economy, as industrialisation can only be possible when there is adequate and affordable energy supply. Such achievements are an indication that the government is fairly distributing the available resources of the state across.

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