From Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown

Local News
In Sierra Leone, Parliament Ratifies Energy Protocols
By Augustine Samba & Erja Vainikka-Howard
May 5, 2010, 17:16

The House of Parliament of the Republic of Sierra Leone has approved the ECOWAS Energy Protocol and the International Renewable Energy Agency Statute (IRENA).

These motions were earlier on brought before the Honorable House on Thursday 15th April 2010 by the Minister of Energy and Water Resources Professor Ogulande Davison

Defending the two motions on Tuesday 4th May 2010, on behalf of the Government, the Minister Energy and Water Resources Professor Ogulande Davison said the ECOWAS Energy Protocol if ratified, will make a great contribution to the development of Sierra Leone, adding that the protocols would further enhance inter-connectivity of energy and power supply among member countries such as Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, and the Ivory Coast and above all he pointed out, would also ensure that countries trade on energy and power.

According the Professor Davison, among member states, Sierra Leone is the only country that is yet to ratify the International Renewable Energy Agency statute (IRENA), while stressing that the protocols will help countries that produces more gas into the air to regulate air pollution.

Responding to the motion, SLPP’s Hon Elizabeth Lavalie refused to a point made by the Minister on countries such as Sierra Leone which is still crippling with sustainable electricity, to involve in selling energy to other countries if these protocols are ratified.

Putting up her argument, the woman Parliamentarian states that the energy that is to be produced through this system, will still not be enough to cater for the whole of Sierra Leone less to talk of selling it out.

Hon. Lavalie further cautioned the Minister to be very careful in dealing with matter relating to energy because from her perspective, even the much talked about Bumbuna Hydro-Electrical Power Supply is still incapable to adequately supply power to the city of Freetown.

For him, APC’s Member of Parliament Hon. Ibrahim Sorie called on Honorable Members to reflect on past treaties before taking hasty decisions on any international treaty or bill.

"Whenever Parliament wants to ratify a treaty, members should start by first of all compare themselves as MPs to other countries," he advised, adding "inter-connectivity has helped many other countries, and that the decision was taken as far back as in 2003 in Dakar and was brought to the attention of the Sierra Leone Parliament as late as in 2004". These protocols, the MP further dilated, will help Sierra Leone to regulate its energy greatly, adding that provisions in the protocols will also help Sierra Leone in strengthening its bilateral and multi-lateral relationships with member countries through trade, transportation, and development.



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