On the occasion of the visit of African Development Bank (AfDB) President Akinwumi Adesina to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), International Rivers calls on the institution to withdraw its support from the Inga 3 Dam. President Adesina was scheduled to visit the Inga site on Wednesday, June 19 as part of his four-day visit to the country.
In 2013, the AfDB approved a $68 million grant to provide technical assistance to get Inga 3 off the ground. Years on, the project is no closer to coming to fruition, and most of the AfDB’s funds remain unspent. The World Bank had agreed to contribute $73 million toward preparation of Inga 3, but ultimately was compelled to cancel its involvement in 2016 in the face of political interference by Congolese officials and sustained public opposition.
The AfDB’s support to Inga 3 will lapse at the end of this month, and it’s a logical time for the institution to end its involvement as well. The AfDB should instead focus on helping Congolese authorities identify and work toward developing energy options that are more cost-effective and capable of delivering energy access to the millions of Congolese who lack it.