By Amadou Manjang
Business owners and workshops in Ebou Town and Nema Junction have lamented that their trades and works are being disrupted by the continuous fluctuation of electricity supply by National Water and Electrical Company (NAWEC). The business owners and workers lamented that they have long ceased to have business as usual due to electricity shortage or total shutdown for hours.
Ousman Gassama, a sawmill worker at Ebou Town, said that NAWEC electricity supply fluctuation always disrupts their works.
“Anytime there is no electricity supply, we have to sit and wait for it because we can’t operate our machines without electricity. This wastes our time and slows work,” he said.
He added that in the recent past, electricity supply was constantly fluctuating and their work wasn’t effective during those periods.
“Although, I understand when NAWEC said they have some breakdown but electricity shortage really affects us,” he decried.
Sheikh Njie, a tailor at Ebou Town who uses electric sewing machines at his workplace, lamented that NAWEC disturbs his works daily.
“The electricity fluctuation is a daily issue here,” he said.
Njie added that the power disruption delays them in sewing or completing the clothes of their customers on time, saying without electricity supply, he cannot work cannot.
“For instance, sometimes we will give the customers a deadline for them to collect their clothes but once the electricity starts fluctuating, we usually miss the deadline. Sometimes, we have to sit together with the customer and wait for NAWEC to restore electricity supply for us to start work again,” he added.
He opined that NAWEC should extend the hours they supply electricity if they cannot provide an electricity supply 24/7.
“I don’t have a generator, so it’s difficult to supplement the electricity supply,” he added.
Kawsu Jobe, another tailor at Ebou Town, said he spent a lot of money on the fuel he uses whenever there is electricity shortage or fluctuation.
“We have been crying about power shortage but to no avail,” he said.
He further added that he spent his money on generators and fuel, just to get his work done and satisfy his customers.
Jainaba Manneh, retailer at a Mini Market around Nema Junction, lamented that the chickens and other spoilable foods in their freezers are affected when NAWEC does not provide them with electricity.
“When we freeze the chickens and NAWEC supplies us with electricity, the frozen chickens meltdown and if they stay long like that, it’s not good. They may get spoiled,” she said.
She further added that lack of electricity makes water and soft drinks hot, which does not attract customers in buying them.
At this juncture, as she was responding to questions, NAWEC cut the electricity supply and within a few minutes, the place started to get hot.
“You see, this is how the electricity supply is,” she quickly responded to the situation.
She further said that she wanted to start selling ice-cream in the mini market, but she is afraid that she will not have a stable electricity supply.
“I don’t think they can stop this fluctuation of electricity supply,” she added.
Momodou Salieu, not his real name, a shopkeeper at Nema Junction, lamented that NAWEC always cut their electricity around 1 am or 2 am and they would stay the whole night without electricity.
He further lamented that the drinks, water and others in his refrigerator for sale gets hot and the customers do not buy them.
“Besides the disruption of business, we can’t even sleep at night because the house gets very hot,” he added.
He said that whenever NAWEC cut off their electricity supply, he would phone them but they usually told him that the area’s transmitter is either hot or the area’s electricity breaker switches itself off.
The public relations office of NAWEC, Pierre Sylva, was contacted for comment about the matter but he didn’t respond.