Solar Street Lights Handing Over by the Ministry of
Energy to the Bombali, Koinadugu and Tonkolili Councils
By Ahmed Fonike
The Ministry of Energy team, led by their abled Minister, Ambassador Henry O. Macauley has on the 10th and 11th of February
continued in the handing over exercise of the popular Solar Street Lights this time across the Bombali, Tonkolili and Koinadugu
Speaking on behalf of the Ministry, the Deputy Secretary Mr. Emmanuel Junisa and the Head of Renewable Energy and Energy
Efficiency, Mr. Robin Mansaray in their statements gave a brief history of the eight thousand eight hundred and eighty (8880) Solar
Street Lights installed across the twelve (12) District headquarter towns and big towns in the country. They also emphasised that as
the project is a community owned project, the councils were in no doubt involved from the inception of the project and so the
responsibility to secure, own and maintain the lights now rest solely in the hands of the councils. The Ministry officials also threw light
on the next phase of the Solar Street Light project which when completed would see more towns and chiefdoms within the various
districts of the country benefit from the installation of fifty thousand (50,000) Solar Street Lights.
In chairing the occasions in their various districts, the Chief Administrators of the Bombali, Koinadugu and Tonkolili District
Councils; William Alpha, Alhaji Alhaji Bangura and Sahr E. Yambasu respectively made very pertinent contributions. These
contributions included amongs, other things, the support from the ministry on further training of solar technicians, maintenance cost
and spare equipment promised by ministry officials.
Other key stakeholders across the three districts including the Councilors, Paramount Chiefs, Council Chairmen, police, ONS, youth
leaders and traders also made short statements on the sustainability of the Solar Street Lights.
Whilst speaking in Makeni, the Minister Ambassador Henry Macauley thanked the Council and people of the township for an
immense welcome given him. He apologised for arriving late hinging his lateness on the issue of the restoration of the Makeni
transmission transformer at the Bumbuna Hydro Power Plant, which he wanted to be up and running before leaving for the
Handing Over ceremony. He allayed their fears that all had went well and the new Shield Wire transformer had been installed and
commissioned, and power was now being transmitted from Bumbuna to Makeni.
In speaking further, Ambassador Macauley stressed that the mandate of his ministry as always was to provide electricity to all and
that electricity business is everybody’s business and its consumption should be made wisely. The Ambassador reiterated that
electricity is a service that easy to quantify and assess mentioning that “when it is there it is there and when it is not there it is not
The minister explained about the recently signed Electricity Crimes Programme which involves collaboration with the ministries of
Justice and Internal Affairs as well as the Anti-Corruption Commission adding that its impact is to curb the illegal connection to
EDSA supply, theft of cables and oil as well as the unsolicited use of the Solar Street Lights for advertisement purposes.
Ambassador Macauley also buttressed the statements of the Deputy Secretary and Head of Renewable Energy regarding the
Energy Revolution mentioning that its intent is to encourage the private sector in the provision of electricity in rural areas through
the use of modern alternative clean energy. In wrapping up, the Minister signed the MoU alongside the Chief Administrator of the
Makeni Town Council before officially handing over the said Solar Street Lights for the district.