RUBAVU - A total of 9, 000 rural households are set to benefit from three micro-hydropower plants being constructed in the districts of Rubavu and Rutsiro.
According to Eric Van Malderen, the co-project manager, the three plants are expected to have a production capacity of 3.5 mega watts. When completed, the plants will be connected to the national electricity network, increasing the power output.
The power plants are being constructed within the framework of the project co-funded by the government of Rwanda and the government of Belgium through the Belgium Technical Cooperation (BTC).
The project, that is estimated to cost more than Rwf2.5 bn, aims at increasing access to electricity among the rural population.
“The interconnection line will benefit directly and indirectly more than 55, 000 people from the two districts,” Van Malderen said.
“Several developments will accumulate as a result of access to electricity, such as creation of new income generating activities, growth of local business, and contribution to improved service delivery in public administration, health facilities and schools.”
The three plants situated in Keya, Cyimbili and Nkora will be able to connect various trade centers and their environs. These will include Budaha, Kivumu, Nyagahinika, Kinihira, Gakeri, Gihumba, Gishwati, Rugaragara and cyimbili.
Assumpta Mukamusoni, who lives close to one of the plants, was hopeful that once connected, her neighborhood will experience development.
“I am considering starting up sewing business using an electric machine,” said Mukamusoni adding that she was in the process of acquiring a small loan from the Ubudehe program.
The power project, that is currently employing local labor for construction work, is expected to end by April next year.