CHOOLWE KASAMU, Chavuma
IF STAYING in an insufficiently lit house due to lack of reliable electricity was an option, majority of the people who find themselves in such situations or environment would choose otherwise.
A reliable source of energy in urban and rural areas is at the centre of every economic activity. It is therefore imperative to have a reliable source of energy.
Amidst jubilations during the commissioning ceremony of the Lukolwe-Sanjongo grid extension project in Chavuma district in North-Western Province recently, Chief Sanjongo had something to say.
â€œThe coming of electricity to this area will help improve the quality of life for the people, particularly on the west bank of the Zambezi River. We are a fortunate community to receive this gift among many in our vast country who are yet to receive reliable electricity,â€ the traditional leader said.
The commissioning ceremony took place on August 25 this year.
The jubilation that characterises the official commissioning ceremonies of electricity projects in rural areas is an awesome event to watch, as one can vividly see the joy in the people that attend these ceremonies.
On September 26 this year, the Rural Electrification Authority (REA) commissioned yet another grid extension project, signifying another milestone.
Government officially commissioned the eighth grid extension project this year. The commissioning of these projects marks the official switching on of power by Government and an official handover of the projects by REA to Zesco.
This yearâ€™s events are milestone achievements which REA is proud of, especially that they took place in the year the country is celebrating its golden jubilee.
Such ceremonies are a great gift of independence to rural communities which have been connected to the national electricity grid for the first time in 50 years of Zambiaâ€™s independence.
In 2014, REA engineers and support staff ensured that a total of eight projects were commissioned. The projects included Mwanza/Kasaka grid extension in Monze in Southern Province, which involved the construction of 67.7 km of 11 kv overhead lines at a cost of over K15.2 million. This project benefited 24 public facilities.
The second ceremony was for the commissioning of the Mbeza grid extension project in Namwala, which involved the construction of 44.4km of 33kv overhead grid lines at a cost of about K11.2 million.
In Eastern Province, a grid extension project commissioning ceremony was held at St. Margaret Secondary School in Chipata. The project was done at a cost of K5.6 million.
In Chingola on the Copperbelt, Government commissioned the Kangâ€™wena grid extension project, which involved the construction of 27.8km of 11kv overhead lines to electrify Kansoka, Milulu and Muchinshi areas at a cost of K5.9 million.
In North-Western Province, Government commissioned Kawanda grid project in the newly created district of Manyinga. It involved construction of a total of 50.7km of 11kv overhead lines at a cost of K11.3 million.
One of the most recent commissioning ceremonies was for the Sanjongo/Lukolwe/Kambuya project in Chavuma which cost Government K3.7 million.
Also electrified was the Kambuya Basic School, Chief Sefuâ€™s Palace, shops and Kambuya Health Centre at a cost of K8.9 million.
This commissioning ceremony also catered for the Chivombo/Kamusamba grid extension project in Chavuma, which targeted Chivombo, Kamusamba and Kalombo areas, and was undertaken at a cost of K1.5 million.
The other project commissioned recently was the Nanjucha grid extension in Senanga in Western Province at a total cost of K8.3 million.
It should be noted that the mentioned projects are just some of the many which REA has completed and energised.
For comments and further information contact:
Department of Corporate Affairs,
Rural Electrification Authority,
Post Box Net 349, Private Bag E891,
Plot No 5033,
Lookout for our Facebook page: RURAL ELECTRIFICATION AUTHORITY-ZAMBIA
Rural areas get REA golden jubilee gift
CHOOLWE KASAMU, Chavuma