Water and electricity supply in Cameroon is still a luxury to many citizens. While areas that are yet to access the precious basic commodities are keeping their fingers crossed anxiously waiting for when the current ‘darkness’ will turn to light, those that are already ‘blessed’ to have the resources are not at peace with themselves owing to the intermittent nature in which supply is done.
It’s difficult to tell with exactitude when water or electricity will be available. In the midst of the worrying situation lies a multitude of government-empowered projects yearning for either completion or fruition.
In the energy sector, giant hydroelectric projects like Lom-Pangar, Memve’ele and Mekin are drawing to their execution deadlines. Rehabilitation works to be carried in some like the 75 MW Bini a Warack dam are expected upon completion to combine with others in bridging the energy gap starring the country in the face.
Even as government multiplies strategies in finalising these projects this year; priority for 2018, it goes without saying that much needs also to be done in the construction of transmission lines. Generating electricity; through the varied ongoing projects, is obviously good, but getting the resource to the national grid from where households and industries could be conveniently served is even better.
Fast-tracking the former without a corresponding effort in transport would be near futility. Generating energy that will not be used is pure waste! Diversifying energy sources, notably maximising the potentials the country has in renewable energy domains, shouldn’t be the least of efforts to be undertaken.
The country’s development vision greatly lies on clean, stable, sufficient and cost-effective energy supply. For industrialisation dream to really come true, there must be sustainable energy to power the different plants.
The task is still daunting as even households are yet to have sufficient and steady energy supply. Efforts are therefore needed to be redoubled to wholly satisfy households as well as meet the growing needs of companies, else the middle-income economy status the country is targeting would simply be an illusion.
As officials of the Ministry of Water Resources and Energy reflect on ways of journeying out of the water and energy supply lethargies; as they meet in their annual conference in Yaounde, serious thought should also be given to water supply.
Cities are opening up with new settlements sprouting left and right. Speedily finalising existing water supply projects would pave the way for other innovative and foresighted policies to be drafted. For, water will always be needed.
There shouldn’t be any respite in government’s efforts. Water and light are ingredients of life and a people-centered system responsibly strives to meet the basic needs.