EU envoy lauds progress of Jabana power project

Micheal Ryan, the head of the European Union Delegation to Rwanda, and the State Minister for Energy, Germaine Kamayirese, yesterday, toured Jabana Substation 1 and 2 in Gasabo District being upgraded to facilitate Grid Loss reduction.
A technician operates machines in the power house at Jabana substation yesterday. (John Mbanda)
A technician operates machines in the power house at Jabana substation yesterday. (John Mbanda)

Micheal Ryan, the head of the European Union Delegation to Rwanda, and the State Minister for Energy, Germaine Kamayirese, yesterday, toured Jabana Substation 1 and 2 in Gasabo District being upgraded to facilitate Grid Loss reduction.

Rwanda has been losing 23 per cent of its electricity in leakages and poor energy infrastructure.

To address the problem, the European Union (EU) and the Rwandan government have signed a financing agreement worth Euro23 million (about Rwf17.2 billion) to upgrade the country’s electricity network.

Speaking to journalists, Ryan said the visit was worth it because he was able to see one of the substations which will boost electricity supply and efficiency in Kigali.

“I am happy to know that the improvement in electricity supply will help improve the standards of living of all Rwandans. Creating an energy ring around Kigali helps stabilise electricity supply which is in line with the country’s development agenda,” Ryan said.

Minister Kamayirese said the project is likely to be complete before the end of 2018.

She said the visit follows last month’s funding agreement with EU that sought to upgrade electricity network systems to reduce the energy burden in Kigali.

“We came to assess the situation of Jabana substation since the upgrading project will start from here and channel the electricity to other substations. The project establishes new distribution lines while upgrading the existing power transformers to reduce on power leakages and losses,” Kamayirese explained.

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State Minister for Energy and water Germaine Kamayirese (2nd right) and the Head of EU Delegation to Rwanda Amb.Michael Ryan tour Jabana station yesterday. (John Mbanda)

Grid Loss reduction programme will see the upgrading of the power substations of Jabana 1, Mount Kigali, as well as the construction of a new substation in Gahanga, Kicukiro District.
Jabana 1 thermal power plant produces 7.6megawatts while Jabana 2 thermal power plant produces 20megawatts.

According to Larry Vincent Mpaka, Acting Director of Electricity Operations at Energy Utility Corporations Limited (EUCL), the project aims at transmitting power from one substation to two substations which, in this case, are Mount Kigali and Gahanga.

The new transmission line from Jabana 1 substation through Mount Kigali substation to Gahanga substation will cover 27 kilometres, to complete what is called the 110kV Kigali ring network in order to be able to supply the rapidly growing demand.

“This will help increase power supply to Kigali by providing alternative lines in case of any fault on the later,” Mpaka said.

The extension to Gahanga will cater for the growing demand in Gahanga itself and the areas of Remera and Kanombe.

This also gives more flexibility in operations and maintenance of power supply during maintenance of one substation, officials said.

editorial@newtimes.co.rw

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