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Shelter Afrique, the Pan-African financier dealing exclusively with the development of affordable housing in Africa, has reacted to reports of cracks and building deficiencies at its joint venture project with Everest Limited.
The financier has stated that while it takes the welfare and safety of all the affected seriously, it was also equally important to set the record straight. Everest Park was developed with Everest Limited as a joint venture to which Shelter Afrique is a shareholder.
Therefore Shelter Afrique as a separate entity does not have a mandate to manage the development. Shelter Afrique as a shareholder has exited the development, having completed the contractual six months’ quality control period.
Additionally, it should be noted that the cracks in the buildings are isolated to two blocks of which these cracks are recent manifestations, and residents have been living on the property for four years.

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Malawi’s Kamuzu International Airport expansion and rehabilitation works is on track. The airport is set to have new surveillance equipment since the previous one broke down in 2000.
The high cost of the surveillance equipment has made it difficult for replacement. In 2009 the surveillance did cost US$1.03m.
The contractors
Overseeing the rehabilitation is the Japanese Marubeni Protechs a Japanese contractor. According to Takao Yamaguchi, the Chief Consultant for Marubeni Protechs, they intend to put in place secondary surveillance radar equipment and automatic dependence surveillance broadcast mode equipment.
“It was not so much of a problem in terms of any risks. The equipment we are provide under this project will enable the controller and other aircrafts aircrafts to see aircrafts in the vicinity. This will enhance separation and safety,” said Takao Yamaguchi.
Project funding

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Mortgage financier, Shelter Afrique is under scrutiny after the National Construction Authority (NCA) questioned their structural fitness of housing units.
The housing units which are worth more than US$ 7m are currently under inspection. So far, NCA has found out that the building’s window frames on the canopy are deflated and the window panels are broken.
NCA does a structural audit
Apart from that NCA is also carrying out a structural audit of Everest Park Apartments phase I: a residential housing estate in Athi-River that has about 242 units. Shelter Afrique is also the company behind the development.
Engineer S.K Mwaguri of the National Building Inspectorate in the Lands ministry says that the evaluation will establish some facts. Including whether the houses are safe for occupation, though some of them are already sold out.
“The inspection will take about 10 days, we will then communicate with the consultant who supervised the work. We will thereafter propose some solutions to counter whatever is defective for approval.
Details under scrutiny
Currently, one of the problems is a huge cracks from the foundation to the walls. The electrical cables are also too close to wet areas near the water tanks, which could lead to electrical faults.
Moreover, the foundation of the walls are damp and the surface appears rough and flaky. “This can however be rectified by strengthening the foundation,” said Mr Mwaguri.
Shelter Afrique is a pan-African finance institution that supports the development of the housing and real estate sector in Africa.
By meeting the needs of the continent’s rapidly growing urban population, their work has a direct and positive impact on the lives of many.
A partnership of 44 African Governments, the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the Africa Reinsurance Company, Shelter Afrique builds strategic partnerships and offers a host of products and related services to support the efficient delivery of affordable housing and commercial real estate.


Source: Construction review

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The African Finance Corporation (AFC)  has urged the federal government to ensure adjustments in electricity tariffs. This aims to attract investments into the power sector.
Mr. Andrew Alli is the managing director of AFC. He was speaking at the 2017 annual conference of the Finance Correspondents Association of Nigeria (FICAN). He cited the importance of power and the need for it to attract more investments into the sector. That is, an adjustment would attract more investors since the government is  unable to fund all its infrastructure deficit.
What the government needs to do
He also added that the government needs to invest in infrastructure yearly. Sourcing funds from both the private or public to invest.Unfortunately  he notes that  many constraints have been a hindrance to infrastructure funding in the country. This is despite the investment opportunities and attractive returns on investments in the country.

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The United States Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) has signed a US $897 grant. The money will cater for a research on the development of three sizeable hydro power plants in Kenya. Virunga Power Kenya Ltd will also use the money to identify sites suitable for power generation. Additionally, they will also propose the best way to connect homes and businesses to clean, reliable electricity.
Virunga’s managing director, Brian Kelly said that the funds will help Kenya reach targets set for electrification in rural areas. In addition, they will also help promote community co-ownership and participation in small renewable energy projects across region and beyond.
The study comes as Kenya makes the move from hydro and fossil fuel plants. As a result, the country is now looking to geothermal, wind and solar sources for electricity generation. The aim of this is to step up electricity generation for local use and export the excess to neighboring countries.
The study will allow the developers identify US equipment manufacturers and service providers. This is according to Ms Lida USTDA’s regional director for sub-Saharan Africa. The selected candidates should be well-positioned to house the hydroelectric plants.
Kenya Electricity Generation Company
USTDA has also loaned US $1.6 million to Kenya Electricity Generation Company (KenGen)and Xago Africa Ltd. The money is to develop their power generation projects in geothermal and solar fields. Furthermore, KenGen plans to increase the amount of electricity generated through the plants at Olkaria fields.
USTDA and KenGen donated US $500,000  for a study to assess the use of US technology solutions. This will serve to increase energy and power production. Nevada-based energy equipment manufacturer Langson Energy Inc is conducting the study.
 
Source: Construction review


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Xodus Group wins two Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) contracts for projects in the Rufisque Offshore, Sangomar Offshore and Sangomar Deep Offshore (RSSD) blocks in Senegal, West Africa.
However, Xodus’ environmental team will draw on its extensive deep water and drilling ESIA experience to undertake the study for drilling activities in the Sangomar and Rufisque blocks for Capricorn Senegal Limited (“Capricorn”), a wholly owned subsidiary of Cairn Energy PLC (“Cairn”), Operator of the RSSD blocks. The group will also perform an ESIA for the Phase 1 Development, comprising a FPSO, over the SNE deepwater oil field located in the Sangomar Deep Offshore block for Woodside Energy (Senegal) B.V. (“Woodside”), as Development Lead for the SNE Phase 1 development.
The project safety studies
As well as the ESIAs, the scope also includes safety studies that Xodus’ Technical Safety and Risk (TSR) division will work with the environmental team to deliver. Xodus will also work with its in-country partner, Earth Systems, to assist Capricorn and Woodside to ensure compliance with Senegalese Environmental Law.
Capricorn has a 40% working interest in the joint venture, alongside partners Woodside (35%), FAR Ltd. (15%), and Petrosen (Senegalese National Oil Company) (10%). The SNE well was one of the world’s largest oilfield discoveries in 2014.
The transfer of operatorship to Woodside for the development phase is projecting to take place next year with Cairn continuing exploration activities on the acreage.  The joint venture plan to submit an evaluation report and exploitation plan to the Government of Senegal in 2018.  The Front End Engineering and Design (FEED) is also set to commence next year with a FID target come end of 2018.
Wim van der Zande, CEO of Xodus Group, said: “These awards build on our experience and strong working relationship with Cairn Energy, on several phases of field architecture development planning. This is a major project for the country and we are proud to be part of this as it moves towards a new stage of development.”

Source: Construction review


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The Africa Renewable Energy Forum is going to take place from 29 November 2017 to 1 December 2017. It will be at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Casablanca. The main focus is on driving the development of renewable energy projects across the continent.
The organization of the forum will be by EnergyNet. ARF is going to address the opportunity for Africa on the global renewable energy development stage. It will also discuss climate resilience strategies for sustainable energy development. The purpose is to meet the climate change requirements in the context of COP22.
Government ministers, heads of African utilities and also some of the biggest global investors in renewable energy are going to discuss solutions to move forward renewable energy projects in the continent.

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East African Community (EAC) member states are considering upgrading their 30,000km road network to bitumen standards in the coming 33 years.
At an average rate of 900km per annum, the region is looking to cover its entire road network come 2050. This is according to EAC vision 2050.
Decent road infrastructure is among the development milestones details for the Vision 2050. The project prioritizes improved road networks to support industrialization drive and ease movements of both people and goods.
Besides, the EAC Partner States have agreed on ten transit transport corridors. The corridors constitute EAC Road Network, including twelve feeder corridors. Also maintaining the infrastructure vision under the Road Transport Sub-sector will be achieved through developing the EAC Corridors.
However, it is envisioned that 2050, the level of services along the main transport corridors will have improved substantially, reaching categories B and A, from the current average regional levels of C, D and E.

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At least 50 households in Mpale village, Korogwe District in Tanzania are now connected to solar micro-grid. This was during a project launched between the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) in collaboration with Ensol Tanzania Ltd.
Dr Juliana Pallangyo, Deputy Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Energy and Minerals, during the launch of the project, said connection of power to the area will improve social lives and boost economic activities.
“I would like to thank UNCDF and Ensol for their efforts in promoting access to electricity. Particularly renewable energy to improve local economic development and livelihoods,” she said. Ensol has thus far connected 50 households in Mpale Village to the solar micro-grid.
Expansion Plans
However, plans are underway to expand the project by connecting a total of 250 households by June 2018. She asked the community members to proper utilize the opportunity by engaging in various economic activities.
“I would like to ask Mpale villagers and all other people in this district to use power for income generating activities and not for lighting only,” she said.
Mpale village is in the remote and mountainous Mpale Ward in Korogwe District, Tanga Region. The village has a population of more than 3,000 inhabitants and 730 households.
Since its establishment in 1972, the village has never had electricity. Most of the people in the village have been relying on unsafe and unclean kerosene as a lighting source. Dr Pallangyo said that the health center in Mpale Village is now connected to the solar micro-grid.
Therefore, she requested the district officials to always make a good follow up to ensure health services are provided to wananchi as required. The Mpale project manager, Mr Prosper Magali said the partnership with UNCDF has been key in the solar micro-grid project.

Source: Construction review




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Electric energy generated in North Africa will soon reach Europe to power it for many years to come. A massive solar power project in Tunisia with a capacity of 4.5 GW will become the biggest solar power plant in the world, and the first designed specifically for export.
The TuNur project, is 50% under  U.K. company Nur Energie and 50% belongs to investors in Tunisia and Malta. It will export electrical energy with under-the-sea cables to Malta, France and Italy.
Concentrated Solar Power (CSP)
TuNur will be on concentrated solar power (CSP) technology. It will use the method known as power tower systems. This type of CSP uses a large field of flat mirrors—heliostats. They track the sun throughout the day and focus all the sunlight onto a unique receiver on top of a tower. There, at the receiver, a heat transfer fluid generates steam. This in turn, drives standard turbine-generators to produce electricity. More advanced designs, such as the TuNur project, use molten nitrate salt as a heat-transfer fluid. This is mainly because it can also act as an energy-storage system that allows  continuous dispatch of energy even during cloudy weather or during the night.
This ability to store energy before powering a generator makes CSP technology a perfect match as a fossil-fuel backup that could allow existing fossil fuel plants to run clean operations at the same or lower cost. This is achievable by replacing the source of energy that produces the steam—fossil fuel—with clean solar power from a CSP plant. According to the Department of Energy, between 11 and 21 GW of CSP could be built and integrated into existing fossil fuel plants in the United States. This is enough electricity to power between three and six million homes.
The Project
The TuNur project is in three stages. The  250 MW first stage will be one of biggest thermal solar power plants in the world. It will be delivering power to Malta. From the project site—Rjim Maatough in Southern Tunisia—to its destination in Malta, there will be a 250 MW HVDC line.
The second stage, with an average capacity of 2,250 MW will deliver electricity to Italy. This is through a 2,000 MW HVDC transmission line that will end north of Rome. 9,000 GWh per year, low-carbon power will go to some countries in Europe. The third stage with 2 GW of capacity will end in France.
When the project is complete, the power plant will cover over 25,000 hectares. This is three times the area of Manhattan.
According to Kevin Sara, chief executive officer at Nur Energie, “CSP is a reliable technology. Sahara on the other hand is an area of the perfect solar resource”.  The growing energy demand and need for low carbon and constant power in Europe makes North Africa the best region for large scale solar development,” added Sara.


Source: Construction review

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The Gauteng Department of Roads and Transport has been rehabilitating the roads infrastructure in South Africa. The heavy and light rehabilitation cost since 2014 is US$23million. This move is completely in line with the Provincial Government’s commitment to providing a world-class road infrastructure.
Mr. Ismail Vadi is the MEC for roads and transport in Guateng, South Africa. According to him allocation of funds to capital projects is going to facilitate improvement mobility. It also promotes economic growth and stimulate the development of small and emerging contractors.
The aim of the project is to maintain the road network in the Province, this will in turn improve road safety. He said that twelve major road rehabilitation projects from Eikenhof to Walkerville are now complete. This is as a result of the provincial roads maintenance grant.
Mr.Vadi also said that twenty five service providers have been appointed for routine outsourced maintenance. Additionally work on the remaining section of the N14 is underway.

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