The Dismissal of Chad’s Minister of Hydrocarbons and Energy

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In a recent development, the President of Chad’s transitional government, Mahamat Idriss Déby, appointed Alixe Naïmbaye Ndolenodji as the new Minister of Hydrocarbons and Energy on Friday, October 27. Alixe Naïmbaye Ndolenodji has held ministerial positions during the era of Idriss Déby, and she now takes the helm from Djerassem Le Bemadjiel.

President Mahamat Idriss Déby, on the day of his inauguration on October 10, 2022, made a bold promise that resonated with the public: “By January 2023, we will triple energy production capacity in the city of Ndjamena.” This declaration was met with enthusiastic applause as he further emphasized that this increase would “not only meet current demands but also those of the future.”

However, this promise has not materialized; quite the opposite. Since then, the production of electricity has plummeted, primarily due to technical issues, much to the dismay of Ndjaménois residents. This decline understandably agitated President Mahamat Idriss Déby, who, during the Council of Ministers meeting on Friday, October 27, warned of his intent to “take full responsibility” for these “repeated failures in the perpetual issue of energy,” according to the official government spokesperson’s report.

The hammer fell a few hours later with the issuance of a decree, relieving Djerassem Le Bemadjiel of his duties. A highly-placed source sheds light on the situation, stating, “The President believed it was his fault, and he thanked him for his services.” However, this is not the sole reason for the dismissal. Allegations of financial impropriety, strained relations with the prominent figure at the helm of the National Electricity Company (SNE), and challenges in the nationalization of Chad’s oil reserves, which did not proceed as smoothly as promised, are among the factors cited.

“In such cases, accountability needed to be established, and the outgoing minister served as the scapegoat, as is often the case,” our source concludes.

This turn of events underscores the complexities and challenges faced by Chad’s transitional government in the realm of energy production and management, leaving many eagerly anticipating the new minister’s strategies to fulfill the unmet promises and overcome the hurdles that have cast a shadow over the nation’s energy sector.

Soukaina Sghir

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