The 90 kV electricity transmission line between Logbaba and Koumassi, which was damaged by a fire on the night of May 1-2, has been restored, according to an internal source at the National Electricity Transmission Company (Sonatrel). Eneo confirmed that the situation has returned to normal since the early hours of Sunday, May 5.

The incident resulted in power outages in several neighborhoods of the first and second districts of Douala, including Akwa, Bonanjo, Bonapriso, Bali, New-Bell, Mboppi, Babylon, Saint-Michel, Nylon, Bonaloka, Bonadiwoto, New Town Airport, Grand Village, Bonongo, Bille, and surrounding areas. The situation persisted for at least three days due to a delayed response from Sonatrel.

Repair work by Sonatrel began in the night of May 3-4, two days after the incident. However, Sonatrel demanded payment of unpaid bills by Eneo to finance the repairs. Eneo, facing a garnishment order from the tax authorities, claimed it was unable to pay Sonatrel. Instead, it proposed carrying out the repairs and deducting the cost from its debt to the public electricity transporter. Sonatrel rejected this proposal and proceeded with the repairs.

The transmission line between Logbaba and Koumassi, built in 2018 with wooden poles as a temporary solution, had two wooden gantries replaced with more durable concrete poles during the repairs. However, there are still 32 wooden poles on this line, which is considered strategic.

An industry expert noted the high risk of incidents and fire, especially given the presence of timber yards along the transmission line. Eneo estimates that an additional CFA90 million in work is needed to strengthen the line. However, Sonatrel has faced challenges in prioritizing this reinforcement, compounded by the financial imbalance in the electricity sector, with over CFA125 billion in unpaid bills from Eneo.


SOURCE: CameroonOnline

Leave a Comment