Angolan President officially commissions Chinese-built drought relief project

By David Ochieng Mbewa

Residents in parts of southern Angola will no longer suffer the effects of drought thanks to a landmark drought relief project built by China-based construction company, PowerChina.

The drought relief project in Cunene Province, launched in 2019, and commissioned on April 4th by President Joao Lourenço, is the first major livelihood project since he assumed office in September 2017.

Angolan President Joao Lourenço cuts a ribbon during a ceremony to officially commission a drought relief project built by PowerChina.

The 150-kilometer channel will greatly promote the development of agriculture and animal husbandry in Cunene Province and improve people’s livelihoods and living standards. Close to 250,000 people are expected to benefit from it, while hundreds of thousands of livestock will have drinking water and irrigation will be possible for an estimated 5,000 hectares of arable land.

The drought relief project is expected to boost farming and animal husbandry in Cunene Province.

Lourenço, flanked by a delegation that included senior government ministers, personally kicked off the project by starting a water pump. He praised PowerChina for the high quality of the project, calling it a “great gift” to the people of Cunene.

Angolan President Joao Lourenço starts a water pump to formally kick off operations of the drought relief project.

Lourenço also pledged continued efforts to reduce the impact of drought in Cunene, Namibe and Huila provinces, which are among the worst affected regions by drought in the southern African nation.

The project is expected to create more than 3,000 jobs for locals.

Li Xunfeng, the general manager of the Angola Representative Office of PowerChina Construction, said the project, which had overcome many difficulties, will bring new hope to residents along the channel.

Li Xunfeng, General Manager of PowerChina Angola Representative Office, officially hands over the Cunene drought relief project to the Angolan government.

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