450,000 households to access electricity by end of this fiscal year

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450,000 households to access electricity by end of this fiscal yearThe Giciye plant in Nyabihu District is among the new projects. It will generate 4 megawatts and will serve areas like Jomba, Kabaya, Bigogwe, Gishwati and other neighboring trading centers

With the numerous power generating projects in offing, government anticipates to have doubled the country’s electricity generation by the end of this fiscal year 2013/2014.

Speaking at a joint parliamentary sitting on Thursday, the Prime Minister Dr. Pierre Damien Habumuremyi said that the new projects are expected to raise power generation capacity from the current 110.8 megawatts to 210.8 megawatts.

The Prime Minister who presented the priority projects to be undertaken by the government during fiscal year 2013/14 based on EDPRS 2 said that with the new capacity, electricity access will increase from the current360,000 to 450,000 households

According to the premier studies have been undertaken and construction will begin of various power plants around the country.

The new plants include; Nyabarongo power plant that will generate 28 megawatts of electricity, Kivuwatt 25 megawatts, Gishoma 15 megawatts, Giciye four megawatts and Rukarara II which will generate up to 2.2 megawatts in power.

Primier Habumuremyi says that the development projects for the next fiscal year will be under the four main pillars of the economy, social well being, governance and justice.

‘‘The selected projects are under these pillars because we realised that they will help us achieve our development targets and above all grow our economy by an average of an annual growth of 11.5 percent and lead to reductions of extreme poverty as projected in EDPRS 2,’’ he told parliament.

Presently, about 16 percent of the population has access to electricity. The government has consequently set itself a target of at least 48 percent of the population having access to electricity by 2017.

To get there, already a massive rural electrification program is ongoing and started with eastern Province. In Kirehe and Ngoma districts, almost all homes are connected to the power grid. The program is slowly being extended to all other districts.

The World Bank has also approved $60m in additional financing for the extension of electricity to Rwandan schools, health centres, hospitals and other public facilities.

The government targets to have increased power to 1000 megawatts by 2017 from various sources including hydro, methane gas, peat, solar and biogas.

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Olive Ndaka is the Junior Editor for RwandaEye. An investor and young entrepreneur, she is a quick learner and has contributed many articles for RwandaEye in Kinyarwanda.

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