Most rural markets and villages in Migori County are currently connected to electricity courtesy of government’s ‘last mile’ power connectivity programme.
Residents now say the multi-billion program has led to a sharp business growth within the various sectors driving the region’s economy.
Led by Former Migori County Council chairman Geoffrey Odera, they termed as fulfilling the almost 90 per cent power connectivity within the county, saying it has greatly allowed people to invest in many small cottage industries in the area.
With a mandate to construct power lines and connects to the rural consumers, Rural Electrification Authority (REA) has in the past few years been commissioning power lines for Migori residents.
“Soon Migori will be ranked among the regions having the highest power connectivity in this country, said the region’s REA power distribution coordinator Daniel Onyango.
However, Onyango decried the high rate of vandalism and theft of electricity wires and transformers in the area, a crisis that he said was compromising the dream of 100 per cent success power connectivity.
“We have been pulled back a bit by the vandals who are destroying constructed lines by stealing power conduit wires, destroying fixed transformers serving homes through syphoning transformer oils and cutting down electricity transmission poles,” said the coordinator, while briefing the area’s development monitoring committee led by county commissioner Joseph Rotich.
But the region’s Kenya Power manager Joel Kerich noted that despite the numerous challenges arising from the vandals, power supplies to consumers had improved in the last one year, with very minimal power outages being witnessed among residents.
He said with the close working relations between his office and those of REA and Ketraco, they had managed to improve power flow to consumers by effectively rectifying the many gaps that always caused unnecessary power blackouts within the region.
Meanwhile, the high power voltage power lines built from Kisii through to the newly up-graded Awendo power station has effectively solved the perennial blackouts that compromised business efforts in the area.
By George Agimba