Kenya targets Ksh8m electricity connections by 2017

By Ronald Owili

The government targets to connect 70 percent of the population to the national grid within the next five years through a 60 billion shillings loan from the African Development Bank.

Energy Cabinet Secretary Davies Chirchir says negotiations for the loan, which is at an advanced stage is expected to be complete by December this year.

The first tranche amounting to 12 billion shillings is expected to be disbursed within the current financial year. If implemented the master plan will see supply go upto 6500 Mega Watts by 2017.

Chirchir says this is equivalent to connecting 8 million Kenyans to the national grid. In a statement to newsrooms the Energy Cabinet Secretary said part of the money will also be used by Kenya Power to revamp its transmission system which has become obsolete and unreliable.

Kenya Power Managing Director Dr. Ben Chumo says the on-going countrywide power upgrade projects will help manufacturers increase their productivity and create jobs, while at the same time increasing the country’s gross domestic product.

He said a reduction in power supply interruptions will also translate to better unit sales for the Power Company.