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Zambia's power generation major Copperbelt Energy Corporation (CEC) has signed an investment deal worth US$220mn with the government of Sierra Leone to build a 128MW power plant in Freetown

powerlines oranviriyincy flickrThe new plant to be set-up in Sierra Leone will have a capacity of 128MW. (Image source: Oranvirincy/Flickr)

The plant will be constructed in Wellington in the east end of Freetown, according to government officials.

Through its subsidiary CEC Africa Investments Limited (CECA), CEC will also focus on developing power infrastructure and training locals in Sierra Leone, stated the power generation company.

The West African nation produces very little electricity, and this has created a deficit for individuals and small-scale consumers, stated reports. Government officials also added that Freetown is in dire need of 100MW of power, and the upcoming CECA deal will be able to help provide the required power. The CECA, which is also developing similar projects in Namibia and Nigeria, will act as an independent power producer (IPP) and will sell the power it produces to the national power authority.

This is Sierra Leone's second major IPP, the first one being the Bumbuna Hydro-electricity Power Plant which was under expansion as part of an ambitious US$700mn project and was set for completion by 2017.

The project is expected to be completed in four years from its inception, stated Franklin Bai Kargbo, attorney general of Sierra Leone.

"This project in line with the government’s development agenda, after many studies had warned that the West African country was faced with a critical energy shortage," said Keifala Sheku Conteh, representative of APC Constituency.

"CEC has promised to supply to residential, commercial, government as well as the mines in Sierra Leone, and this is touted to be one of the largest private sector investments in the country."