NINE COUNTIES BENEFIT

State to connect over 14,000 households to electricity in Mt Kenya

Energy ministry has camped in the region for weeks commissioning power projects

In Summary
  • Energy ministry has camped in Mt Kenya region for weeks commissioning power projects
  • Marsabit county is the biggest beneficiary with an investment of Sh548.88 million that will see 1,498 homes connected.
Energy PS Alex Wachira (right) with Mbeere North MP Geoffrey Ruku help carry a power pole at Cianthia village in Embu county on June 12, 2024.
Energy PS Alex Wachira (right) with Mbeere North MP Geoffrey Ruku help carry a power pole at Cianthia village in Embu county on June 12, 2024.
Image: Alice Waithera

The Ministry of Energy has embarked on an initiative to drive up power connections in Mt Kenya region.

The Rural Electrification and Renewable Energy Corporation has said this is in line with government's plans to ensure 100 per cent connectivity by 2030 in collaboration with development partners.

In what is being seen by some quarters as yet another attempt by the government to pacify the region that has been rocked by divisions and disquiet in the recent past, the ministry has camped in the region for weeks commissioning power projects.

About 323 projects are currently being implemented in nine counties in the region at a cost of Sh2.1 billion.

Last week, Rerec launched Rugongo Ruraya programme that will cover 270 homes in Kigumo constituency, announcing that Sh434 million projects are ongoing and will connect power to over 6,000 households this year in Murang’a county.

On Monday, Energy PS Alex Wachira toured Mukurwe-ini constituency in Nyeri where he launched Thitima Kihinyio programme.

Rerec is implementing projects worth Sh127.34 million in Nyeri to connect 3,265 households to electricity.

On Tuesday, the PS headed to Mbeere North constituency in Embu county where 10 projects worth Sh53.73 million are being implemented.

“We are mapping areas that are yet to be covered to accelerate the process of installation of electricity and reach as many households as possible,” he said.

In Meru county, Rerec is undertaking 47 projects worth Sh294.26 million while in Kirinyaga, 41 projects that will cost Sh316.91 million are on-going.

Energy PS Alex Wachira helps erect a power post at Cianthia village in Embu county on June 12, 2024.
Energy PS Alex Wachira helps erect a power post at Cianthia village in Embu county on June 12, 2024.
Image: Alice Waithera

Marsabit county is the biggest beneficiary with an investment of Sh548.88 million that will see 1,498 homes connected while 20 homes will be covered in Sh75.19 million projects in Laikipia.

The PS who commissioned Sh18.5 million Ciathia project, Sh4 million Karerema/Evurore project Sh6.7 million Kanyaga B/Gitiburi project and Sh18.1 million Cierie project in Embu, confirmed that over 14,000 households will be connected in the region by end of year.

He urged local MPs to help register residents living near power lines so that they can be incorporated and in turn fast track expansion of power coverage.

"Nationally, Rerec has undertaken Sh10 billion rural electrification projects in the last two years," he said.

In February, the President led a contingent of Kenya Kwanza leaders on a tour of the Central region following sustained disquiet by residents that saw some UDA leaders train their guns on his administration.

Further, the ruling coalition has been rocked by in-fights pitting leaders affiliated with the President and those allied to his deputy Rigathi Gachagua.

The fights have led to the establishment of the Villager Movement started by supporters of Gachagua and which was started after the leader of Majority in the National Assembly Kimani Ichung’wa, accused him of seeking the attention of villagers.

The movement has received the backing of some leaders who have defended Gachagua's push to unite the Mt Kenya region which is his backyard.

Last Friday, Maragua MP Mary Waithera said all politics start at the village level and wondered why some quarters in the Kenya Kwanza government are keen on ensuring the region is disunited.

“Why is it branded tribal when Mt Kenya region pushes for unity?” Waithera posed.

Nyeri Governor Mutahi Kahiga said the region is unhappy with the discontent being registered by Gachagua.

“The President would come to the region with a Bible in his hand while seeking our votes. Now he’s chest thumping. Let no one lie to you. We will not support the Finance Bill. Why would you want to tax a car you did not help buy?” he posed.

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