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Eneo invests for improved service quality: 2021 or time to accelerate


During the past year, Eneo has accelerated the implementation of its investment plan, thanks to the mobilisation of 100 billion CFA francs on the local banking market. This has had a positive impact on the customer experience in terms of service continuity (+18% compared to 2020). After a difficult start of the year and despite an unfavourable natural condition in the North, Eneo has recorded an overall improvement in the supply-demand equation and the stability of its distribution network.
Letters of appreciation for the improved service quality issued by authorities and elected representatives, a significant drop (more than 50%) in the number of power cut-related complaints from household and business customers.
These are the early results of Eneo Cameroon's investments, which have been accelerated since the beginning of 2021 with the raising of 100 billion CFA francs on the local banking market. This customer perception is aligned with the improvement of key indicators for evaluating service quality. An 18% decrease in the duration of outages compared to last year. A 16% decrease in the frequency of outages. This underlines the gradual strengthening of actions on the network since March-April, which are probably the most difficult months of 2021, with a drop in service quality. The actions carried out by Eneo in application of its investment plan are essentially:

  • The continuation work on extending the lifespan of major hydroelectric facilities.
  • The implementation of maintenance plans for thermal generation plants
  • The implementation of key actions to strengthen the distribution network: 85,000 poles have already been replaced out of the 90,000 projected for 2021 and 2022, more than 1,313 km of lines have been bulldozed, and new distribution lines have been built in the various regions (xx km)
  • The continuation of CAN construction sites, especially with a view to connecting the new sports facilities to the network. Eneo has built dedicated supply lines for the stadiums and other sites specifically for the AFCON. These lines are to be used in case of failure of the generators that are the main sources of power. Power lines for other venues have been built.

These global investments to improve service continuity as a whole, and AFCON projects, encourage us to look forward to the continental football competition with optimism. However, there is no such thing as zero risk and there are still fragile areas in the electricity system (generation, transmission and distribution), so Eneo Cameroon is preparing for AFCON with the utmost vigilance and mobilisation. Since October, the company has set up a task force in charge of coordinating its generation, maintenance and operation activities. This special team oversees the management of maintenance operations, the latest security or network reinforcement projects and organises reinforced monitoring of the segments of the electrical system under Eneo's control.

Eneo's 2021 investment in generation
In 2021, Eneo contributed 70% of the energy served to households and businesses in Cameroon. The remaining 30% is generated by independent producers and the Memve'ele power plant operated by EDC.
The supply-demand balance was relatively maintained in the Southern Interconnected Network, whereas in the North Interconnected Network, the unfavourable water shortage resulted in a generation deficit at Lagdo and in the North, where emergency investments only reduced the rationing resulting from this situation.

What did Eneo achieve in the area of generation in 2021?

  • Transfer of the RIS and installation of 24 MW of additional thermal capacity in Ngaoundere and Garoua-Djamboutou. 12 MW for each of the sites. This project started in the last quarter of 2020 and was completed in April 2021.  This improved the energy supply following the water deficit that limited generation from the Lagdo dam.
  • Launch of the implementation of the 40 MW solar plus thermal modular solution. In collaboration with the government, Eneo is handling the compensation of residents living on the sites where these structures will be built in Guider and Maroua. Eneo has launched the construction of the civil engineering platforms that will carry the equipment, i.e. the solar panels and the thermal units. The government has granted facilities to the companies in charge of deploying the solutions for the speedy transiting of the equipment across borders. Shipments of the solar panels and generators are underway and the first MW of solar and thermal power should be injected into the grid in the first quarter of 2022. The companies chosen to operate are SCATEC for the 30 MW of solar to be installed in Guider and Aggreko for the 10 MW of thermal to be installed in Maroua.

Eneo continued to work on extending the lifespan of the Songloulou hydroelectric dam (phase 1)
Within this framework, work continued on the installation of a modern monitoring system. This device is intended to improve the monitoring of the dam by installing new equipment and rehabilitating existing non-functional equipment.
In addition, operations to treat cracks and rehabilitate valve equipment are continuing.
It should be recalled that recent studies have shown that the Songloulou facility is stable. Work is in progress and phase 2 to will start soon.

In isolated power stations
After acquiring and installing 16 new generators in 12 power stations in 2020 for a total capacity of almost 4 MW, Eneo has, in 2021, acquired new generators or redeployed others in 12 power stations for an added capacity of almost 6 MW. The beneficiary towns are Touboro, Olamze, Djoum, Garoua boulai, Tignere, Poli, Banyo and Ngaoundal.
Three other new generators are being installed in Mouloundou and Mape.
In addition, thermal power stations are being built in two towns in the South West: Nguti and Mamfe.  These towns will benefit from 3 MW of thermal capacity and 5 MW respectively. The works should be delivered by the end of 2021.

Renewable Energies
In order to support the government in its plan to develop renewable energies and reduce greenhouse gases, Eneo has committed to:

  • Supporting Independent Power Producers by setting up the solar power plants in Maroua and Guider (25MW). Eneo is working with the government to meet all the conditions to get them operational.
  • Provide an urgent and effective solution to the energy crisis in the NIG by installing modular solar power plants in Maroua and Guider (30 MW with storage) with first injection in the first quarter of 2022.
  • Support the Independent Promoter in the installation of the small hydroelectric power plant in Mbakaou (1.4 MW) to supply the localities of Tibati; Mbakaou and the neighbouring villages this year. Eneo is ready to buy this energy and has already reinforced the distribution network in the beneficiary localities in order to evacuate the energy that will be produced to the households and small businesses in these localities.
  • Continue its hybridisation programme for remote power plants by developing solar farms. After Djoum (2018) and Lomié (2020), it is the turn of Garoua Boulai to benefit from a solar farm with a capacity of 735 KW by the end of 2021. In 2022, Eneo plans to build new facilities in Banyo, Poli, Yoko and Touboro.

Eneo's investment in the distribution in 2021
Pole replacement programme
For 2020 and 2021, the objective was to replace 90 000 wood poles with a mix of new wood, concrete and metal poles. In 2020, Eneo replaced 34 000. In 2021, the programme was accelerated and by the end of September 2021 we had already replaced 83 000 poles. With a monthly average of 5 000 poles in 2021, Eneo is projecting a performance of more than 90 000 poles by the end of 2021. 
This is a programme that will continue in 2022 and beyond. The rate of production of concrete poles in the local industries whose creation Eneo has stimulated should increase despite a sharp increase in the price of inputs (iron and cement).

 NB: YTD, here, means end of September.

Pole replacement programme in the various regions by the end of September 2021

Controlling overgrown vegetation along the line corridors
The programme to reopen major and secondary line corridors in rural areas is continuing either with bulldozers for deep cleaning or with common initiative groups for seasonal cleaning. Objectives: keep the line corridors clean, facilitate accessibility and allow faster interventions, reduce the number of interruptions in rural areas.
These objectives have been achieved wherever the programme has already been implemented: from more than 15 interruptions per month, sometimes resulting in outages lasting several days, to less than 3 interruptions with outages due to vegetation lasting less than a day on average in Ayos and Akonolinga, where the lines have been cleaned with bulldozers. More than 1313 km of line corridors have been cleaned with these machines since 2019 in various regions of the country in the southern part.
In the north, the programme consisted rather in the cleaning of the feet of poles by the CIGs in order to avoid bush fires.

Rehabilitation of underground lines 
In order to strengthen the redundancy and flexibility of the distribution network for better energy transmission, the programme to rehabilitate the underground networks that have been unavailable for a long time has been launched. In 2020, 20 km of new underground cables were installed in the networks and commissioned in Yaoundé and Douala. In 2021, 32 km are executed.
Extensions and reinforcements of MV/LV networks in various regions (2020/2021)
250 km of new lines created in the different regions to improve access to electricity for more than 100 000 people.
In addition, more than 350 km of power lines have been rehabilitated to provide power to or strengthen the continuity of service in about a hundred localities in the South, the Sanaga Maritime and Adamawa.

Revitalisation of substation maintenance and renewal of essential switching equipment
Specialised teams (recruitment and training of entirely local personnel) were set up to take over this highly technical activity. The distribution components of the large source substations were maintained in 2020 and 2021. In addition, Eneo has undertaken to replace the essential cubicles in the distribution substations in the neighbourhoods. The programme, which began in Douala and Yaoundé, saw the installation of 330 new cubicles in 2020 and 550 new cubicles in 2021.

Supply of power to AFCON host sites and government projects
At the request of the government, Eneo has built the power supply facilities for the various AFCON host sites:

Eneo is contributing to the smooth running of the AFCON host sites (dedicated lines and distribution substations for the stadiums hosting the matches and training sessions). It should be noted that the regulations stipulate that the stadiums are supplied primarily by the generating units mobilised by the organisers. Eneo's dedicated lines come as a back-up in case of an incident with the generating units. And Eneo and the government have made sure that these dedicated lines are ready.  

Commercial Actions
At the end of October 2021, the number of active customers rose to 1 643 885. This number has been increased by the 160 000 new active customers recorded since the beginning of the year, 76 000 of whom are the result of new connections and the rest of whom were converted from illegal consumers.
In the meantime, Eneo has 230 000 customers who have adopted the prepaid system.

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