The Public Sector Reform Unit (PSRU) and the Human Resource Management Office (HRMO) visited the Ministry of Energy and Water Resources today 1 July 2009 with the view to undertaking a Management and Functional Review in order to capacitate the Ministry for improved service delivery.
The Ministry is the second of the five remaining Ministries the PSRU is currently reviewing in line with His Excellency’s Agenda for Change.
Addressing the meeting at his office past Wednesday, the Minister of Energy and Water Resources, Professor Ogunlade Davidson, said the Ministry lacks the capacity to function effectively on its own and often heavily depend upon assistance from parastatals within the Ministry.
The Minister requested for an internal audit unit and a legal expert that specialises in energy law to assist the Ministry in the monitoring of parastatals and also in the negotiation of contracts. “The Ministry has been disadvantaged due to these gaps”, he stated. That notwithstanding, efforts are underway to restructure the Ministry to fulfill its vision consistent with President Ernest Koroma’s ‘Agenda for Change’.
Professor Davidson said the Ministry has made some progress in the area of energy and that Phase 1 of Bumbuna Hydro Electricity Project will soon be commissioned. Immediately after, he maintained, Bumbuna Phase 2 will commence, which will be entirely funded by Sierra Leoneans, through a special investment scheme.
On the provision of pure drinking water, the Minister said there are plans in the Energy Policy Document for water treatment plants and additional facilities in all district headquarter towns which will increase access to safe drinking water.
Regarding the possibility of a second dam in Freetown, considering the population increase in recent years, Professor Davidson disclosed that work on Orogu dam will commence shortly by the Chinese. This will improve the water situation in the east-end of Freetown. “Without energy and water resources, development is doomed” the Minister concluded.
The Director of PSRU, Dr Julius Sandy, said that the Management and Functional Review is a productivity exercise that involves, reviewing existing capacity, analyzing capacity gaps and determining the Next Steps to maximize efficiency and improve service delivery in MDAs. The visit of the team to the Ministry he added, “was to ensure that at the end of the exercise, the Ministry has the capacity to deliver quality services on a timely basis”
The Director General HRMO thanked the Minister for his efforts in re-engineering the Ministry, adding that meaningful development cannot take place without an efficient energy and water sector.