Kenya: REREC Targets 75% Power Connections In Rural Kenya

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Kenya’s Rural Electrification and Renewable Energy Corporation (REREC) is seeking approval of KSh14.5 billion in the current financial year to facilitate power connections in rural areas.

If approved, the fund will enable the corporation to connect 690,000 households in rural areas with electricity.

Energy Principal Secretary Alex Wachira observed on Saturday that power connections in rural areas are currently at about 75 percent, and with approval of the funds, REREC will strive to increase the connections to more than 78 per cent by the closure of the financial year.

Wachira, who spoke at Mugira village in Muragua constituency when he launched a power project, said increased electricity connections, especially in rural areas, will spur economic growth and create more employment opportunities.

According to a report by Kenya News Agency, REREC is targeting to attain 100 per cent power connection in rural Kenya by 2030, an initiative that will require more than Sh42 billion.

“With the ongoing power connection projects in various rural parts, we target to attain 78 per cent by the close of this financial year, but this will be realised if the amount we need is approved by the National Treasury.

“The increase in power connections in rural areas is aimed at boosting economic growth and creating employment since some projects and income generating initiatives depend on electricity supply, “he added during an occasion he co-hosted with Maragua MP Mary Waithera.

The PS further noted that theft of transformers and vandalization of power infrastructure that had cost the Energy Ministry Sh2 billion every year has gone down, calling on residents to be vigilant against anyone who is causing damage to the power infrastructure.

“As a country, we witnessed increased vandalism of power infrastructure, especially last year and early this year.

“With collaboration with key stakeholders, the crime has gone down, and we are working to stop and end the vandalism completely.

“Theft of transformers and cables, among other equipment, has caused the Kenya Power Company to incur huge losses per year. We appeal to residents to help us stop this crime,” added Wachira.

At Maragua constituency, Wachira launched a Sh10 million power connection project that will see 130 homes connected within Makuyu ward.

He pointed out that Murang’a County, since last financial year, has benefited from a power connection project worth Sh597 million that has seen over 15,000 homesteads access electrical power.

Maragua MP, on her part, lauded the government’s initiative to increase power connections in rural areas of the country, saying that in her constituency, the three villages of Mugira, Mathingira, and Kanderendu have already been connected to electricity.

She observed that Maragua is one of the areas that are in dire need of power connections, having 55 per cent power connections currently.

Residents of Mugira village narrated how they used lumps to light their houses at night, especially when their children were doing homework from school.

They added that insecurity in the area will drop with the residents promising to open up businesses that use power as a source of energy.

 

 

Source: https://energynewsafrica.com