EWSA: Fix the smaller issues of intermittent supply first

Barely a monthly ago, the Energy, Water and Sanitation Authority (EWSA) outlined an ambitious plan, projecting that 70 per cent of the households in Rwanda would access electricity by 2017. This was a revised figure and projected time from the earlier 50 per cent households to access power by 2015.

Barely a monthly ago, the Energy, Water and Sanitation Authority (EWSA) outlined an ambitious plan, projecting that 70 per cent of the households in Rwanda would access electricity by 2017. This was a revised figure and projected time from the earlier 50 per cent households to access power by 2015. Although most Rwandans and sector experts were skeptical about this target, Emma Francoise Isumbingabo, the water and energy state minister, assured them that the target was achievable “since Rwanda is a small country”.

However, a few weeks after this proclamation, the situation has become worse, with more load shedding and intermittent power supply. Businesses are crying foul over lost revenue and the risk unstable power supply exposes their equipment to.

Should we say that EWSA wants us to first experience a worse situation before we get better services?

Today, about 16 per cent of households have power and the country produces just 110MW of electricity presently, with about 25MW scheduled to come on line in August from the methane gas plant on Lake Kivu.

As if to show Rwandans that the situation was serious, EWSA published a load shedding schedule on Monday. Although this is an improvement from unplanned power outages, some areas like Kimironko in Kigali are still facing several ‘power cuts’ that last between 6:00pm and 8:00pm. What is confusing is why EWSA cuts power for three, five or 10 minutes, several times in two hours. This action, besides exposing the power line to risks, puts the clients and their property at great danger that could result from power surges.

Therefore, before we start setting overly ambitious plans, why don’t we first fix the smaller issues? Customers and the country expect better services from EWSA.

Subscribe to The New Times E-Paper


You want to chat directly with us? Send us a message on WhatsApp at +250 788 310 999    

 

Follow The New Times on Google News