Companies

Poor homes power connection project faces delay on funding hitch

kplc

Technicians repair power lines. FILE PHOTO | NMG

brianngugi_img

Summary

  • Kenya Power’s plan for subsidised connection of homes to the national grid under the African Development Bank (AfDB) funding faces delays due to cash shortfalls.
  • The African Development Bank (AfDB) warned that the cheap connections could be derailed if the Treasury does not inject additional funds into the scheme dubbed Last Mile Connectivity Project

Kenya Power’s plan for subsidised connection of homes to the national grid under the African Development Bank (AfDB) funding faces delays due to cash shortfalls.

The African Development Bank (AfDB) warned that the cheap connections could be derailed if the Treasury does not inject additional funds into the scheme dubbed Last Mile Connectivity Project

“As the sum of contract price has exceeded the total estimated project cost, the Government of Kenya contribution has to be increased or supplementary finance has to be requested to avoid delay on payment to contractors,” said AfDB in an audit update for the project.

“Therefore the Government has to increase the counterpart fund or request for supplementary financing to complete the project.”

The project aims at extending the low voltage system throughout the county so that counties with low electricity penetration rate benefit the most. The latest phase of the project is expected to connect about 300,000 customers pushing the household with access to electricity to about 1.5 million.

The electricity distributor says in its latest annual report 306,771 customers have been connected to the grid under the project.

“In working towards achieving universal access to electricity, the Company continued to implement the Last Mile connectivity and Transformer Densification projects supported by the Government and other development partners,” said Kenya Power.

“During the year, a total of 197,971 customers were connected under the Last Mile project and 466 new single-phase distribution transformers were installed along existing distribution lines under the Transformer Densification project. This contributed to increase in the number of customers connected by 306,771.”