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Niger Faces Rolling Blackouts Following Coup

Major cities in Niger, including its capital Niamey, are facing rolling blackouts following last week’s coup in the West African country. The power shortages are a result of Nigeria cutting supplies to its northern neighbor, Niger’s electricity company Nigelec says.

The West African trading bloc ECOWAS has imposed sanctions on the troubled nation over the coup but has not said if these include electricity supplies. Residents living in the cities of Niamey, Maradi and Zinder have power for about an hour at a time before it is switched off for up to five hours.

Power cuts like these are unusual to the west African nation, which normally has regular and reliable supplies. But the country is heavily dependent on its wealthier neighbor to the south, Nigeria, as its main supplier of electricity.

The situation is causing frustration among residents, who are struggling to cope with the lack of power. Many businesses have been forced to close or reduce their hours, while households are struggling to keep food fresh and carry out daily tasks.

It’s to be seen how long the situation will continue and what impact it will have on the already fragile economy of West African country.

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TAG: Niger