On Wednesday, February 17, 2021, the National Authorizing Office (NAO) of the Liberian Ministry of Finance and Development Planning (MFDP), in partnership, with the European Union and in collaboration with the Liberia Electricity Corporation (LEC) and MBH Power Limited, commissioned the fourth batch of 11 engineering internship students and young engineers, recruited from the engineering departments of the Stella Maris Polytechnic University and the University of Liberia under the Monrovia Consolidation of Electricity transmission and Distribution “Light Up Monrovia” (LUM) Project, aimed at connecting 38,000 new households to the LEC grid in Monrovia and its environs. The students, who were selected through rigorous screening, will participate in the ongoing designing and construction works of the LUM project. They will be deployed at several construction sites, to be trained on electrical and civil engineering and general engineering safety.
More than 40 young engineers have been trained so far under this programme funded by the European Union.
17 years after the end of the civil war, Liberia is yet to grant all its citizens access to affordable electricity, though significant progress is being made towards ensuring every part of the country is connected to electrical power. The distribution of power to large parts of Monrovia and its environs, with support of the EU, is part of these efforts.
Speaking during the commissioning event, the Team Leader of the Infrastructure sector of the EU Delegation to Liberia, Stefania Marrone, indicated that she was glad to see both female and male young Liberian students participating in the project. “Participating in an engineering internship allows students to be prepared to enter the world market in their chosen career,” she noted.
Att. Martus Bangalu, representative of the NAO of the MFDP, congratulated the youthful Liberians on their recruitment to the project, and thanked the support of the EU. “Having engineers in the making to work alongside experts through an internship programme has significantly helped increase the capacity of young Liberians in the field of engineering”, she said.
Mr. Henry Kimber, Head of Projects at LEC, noted that the opportunity given to senior students and recent graduates had not been offered to him when he graduated from the University in the 70s, and called on interns to seize this opportunity. “I call on you to make good use of the opportunity that you are being provided. You will be exposed to electrical facilities and works, equipment and materials that you never saw in the classroom. We require nothing less but your best while on this internship programme,” Mr. Kimba emphasized.