By: Yusuf M Hasan
HARGEISA (Somalilandsun) – The multibillion-dollar Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam which is currently 30% complete has not received a penny in external funding thence solely financed by Addis Ababa based central coffers and contributions from Ethiopians in the Diaspora and citizens of neighbouring African countries.
The Ethiopian Consul General in Somaliland Brigadier General Berhe Tesfaye informed this at a meeting where local citizens and Ethiopians residing in Somaliland were in congregation in hotel in Hargeisa where he also revealed that his country is now in a position to supply a sufficient Electricity Somaliland.
“For use by Somaliland citizens the Ethiopian government has availed 60 megawatts of electricity at the Togwajale border town for the sole purpose of supply to somaliland and us by citizens” Said Brig Tesfaye
The diplomat, to whom the conducive relations prevalent between his country and Somaliland are attributed to, urged both local and foreign investors wishing to facilitate the power supply from the Ethiopian side will be accommodated once relevant authorization is availed from the Hargeisa based authorities.
On the benefits of the Renaissance Dam to Ethiopia Brigadier Tesfaye said that it is expected upon completion that the Ethiopian economy shall shift from one driven by Agriculture to an industrial based one a move anticipated to alleviate poverty thus pep-up economic growth.
Informing that over six countries as far apart as Burundi, Tanzania and Kenya have already requested electricity supply once the Dam is completed Brig Tesfaye also revealed to participants of the Ethio-Somaliland meeting that if Somaliland takes advantage of the 60 megawatts already in Togwajale town it will Djibouti and Sudan (North) currently supplied.
Stressing on the importance the Ethiopian government places on successful completion of the multi-billion dam project and the attendant benefits to be accrued not only by Ethiopians but citizens of the 10 Riparian stats that include Egypt which is in disfavor, the Ethiopian Consul General said that financial support is required from Ethiopian at home and in the diaspora as well as other friendly citizens like Somalilanders.
Said he, “We are undertaking a multi-billion project ingle handedly thus urging for contributions of any amount big or small”
Saying that a project in which ordinary citizens take ownership pride in, is that which is implemented from the people’s little donations be it a Shilling, Birr or Dollar rather than from huge contributions in their millions that unfortunately come with attached strings.
Buoyed by the words of Brigadier General Berhe Tesfaye, the participants who had come for deliberations thence unprepared for a fundraiser dipped into their pockets and at the end of the meeting thousands of Dollars in cash had been contributed while thousands were pledged.
According to the Ethiopian consulate in Hargeisa those wishing to contribute towards construction of the Renaissance Dam can do so through the purchase of bonds as cheap as $50 while others can chip in directly through an account at the Commercial branch of the Somaliland Central Bank in Hargeisa.
For more information kindly contact the officeof the Ethiopian Consul General office in Hargeisa
Similar meetings brainstorming issues of importance for Ethiopians resident in Somaliland those in relation to local citizens as well as, geared towards fostering relations are an ongoing program organized by the Hargeisa based Consul General.
Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam
The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam , formerly known as the Millennium Dam and sometimes referred to as Hidase Dam, is a gravity dam on the Blue Nile River in Ethiopia currently under construction. It is in the Benishangul-Gumuz Region of Ethiopia, about 40 km (25 mi) east of the border with Sudan. At 6,000 MW, the dam will be the largest hydroelectric power plant in Africa when completed, as well as the 8th largest in the world sharing the spot with Krasnoyarskaya.The reservoir at 63 billion cubic meters will be one of the continent’s largest. According to the Ethiopian government, as of February 2014, the dam is 30% complete.For full Dam details visit www.grandmillenniumdam.net