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News release

Energy crisis: Sierra Leoneans dissatisfied with government’s efforts on electricity provision

29 Apr 2024 Sierra Leone
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News release
Key findings
  • Only three in 10 Sierra Leoneans (31%) say their homes have an electric connection from the Electricity Distribution and Supply Agency (EDSA) (Figure 1).
  • Only 11% of all respondents say they have electricity service that works “most of the time” or “all of the time.” After tripling between 2015 and 2018, the share of households who report reliable access to electricity dropped by 10 percentage points between 2020 and 2022 (Figure 2).
  • The situation is even worse for rural households: Only 1% of rural residents say they have reliable electricity (Figure 3).
  • Fewer than one in three Sierra Leoneans (31%) approve of the government’s handling of electricity provision, while 66% say it is performing “fairly badly” or “very badly” on the issue (Figure 4).

Only about one in 10 Sierra Leoneans enjoy reliable electricity service from the national grid,  and most citizens say the government is doing a poor job of addressing the problem,  according to the most recent Afrobarometer survey. 

One-third of survey respondents say they are connected to the national grid, and far fewer – including just one in 100 rural residents – report that they have electricity that works most or all  of the time. 

Sierra Leoneans have experienced frequent nationwide power outages in recent weeks,  affecting even the provision of medical care at hospitals and clinics, as the government  grapples with its long-standing difficulties in providing affordable and reliable electricity to its  citizens.