General Manager Emmanuel Sanou opened up proceedings by praising the hard working staff of Yeelen Ba and their “customer is king” motto that has now enabled 1200 households and 8400 people to be provided with electricity in 13 communities across the Kénédougou province.

Mr Sanou highlighted the ongoing support from shareholders, Nuon and FRES, and key partners EU and Yeelen Kura in helping Yeelen Ba in reaching this milestone. Special thanks must also go to the Burkina Faso Ministry of Energy, EDF and regional officials for realising the role of rural electrification in promoting rural development.

Other speakers, including Traore Karimou of FRES’s Malian company Yeelen Kura, emphasised the importance of viewing electricity in rural areas as no longer a luxury, but a necessity in today’s climate. In this, strategic partnerships such as that between Yeelen Kura and Yeelen Ba are an integral component in promoting rural electrification through knowledge sharing and developing best-practice standards.

Commemorative gifts were presented to Yeelen Ba’s 1st and 1000th clients and local authorities. Interviews with Yeelen Ba clients were held who spoke of the impact electrification has brought to their daily life.

The next step is to build towards 3.000 clients by 2015.