President Jeammeh, that every community in the Upper River Region will have access to electricity in addition to the construction of more tar roads within the next five years heralds further improvements in socio-economic progress. This, according to the President is his reward for the love and loyalty shown to him by the people of the region since he took the mantle of leadership of the country 21 years ago.
The importance of electricity, especially in the rural communities, cannot be over-emphasised with 1.5 billion people, or more than a fifth of the world’s population, having no access to electricity, and a billion more having only an unreliable and intermittent supply. Of the people without electricity, studies showed that 85% live in rural areas or on the fringes of cities and the United Nations estimates that an average of $35 billion-40 billion a year needs to be invested until 2030 so everyone on the planet can cook, heat and light their premises, and have energy for productive uses such as schooling.
The past decade has witnessed significant progress in rural electrification at a pace already deemed impressive by development experts. President Jammeh attaches so much importance to the energy sector as a catalyst of national development and today the majority of the Gambia’s rural population can boast of access to electricity, with the rural electrification project specially designed by his administration to ensure the availability of affordable energy to every rural community in the country.
Energy growth is directly linked to economic prosperity across the globe and electrifying rural Gambia will also help to curb the loss of rural human resource to the urban areas. So as the people of the Upper River Region brace up for further economic expansion, we implore them to continue to show their love and loyalty to Professor Jammeh, whose love for his people is immeasurable.