𝐃𝐀𝐕𝐈𝐒 𝐂𝐇𝐈𝐑𝐂𝐇𝐈𝐑 𝐀𝐃𝐃𝐑𝐄𝐒𝐒𝐄𝐒 𝐒𝐄𝐍𝐀𝐓𝐄 𝐂𝐎𝐍𝐂𝐄𝐑𝐍𝐒 𝐎𝐍 𝐏𝐎𝐖𝐄𝐑 𝐃𝐈𝐒𝐂𝐎𝐍𝐍𝐄𝐂𝐓
In an extraordinary confluence of events, the Cabinet Secretary (CS) for Energy and Petroleum, Mr. Davis Chirchir, made a remarkable appearance before the Senate during a session of Question Time. This occasion coincided with a week-long sitting in Turkana County Assembly, dubbed 'Senate Mashinani.'
The focus of this session revolved around the predicament of communities residing in areas where power generation thrives, yet they remain disconnected from the national power grid. The paradox of these regions producing significant energy while being deprived of its benefits raised serious concerns among Senators.
Senator James Lomenen, representing Turkana County, eloquently voiced the collective sentiment, asking, "Why do places like Lodwar and Loima experience frequent blackouts, despite being power generation hubs? It's a paradox. The Turkwel Hydroelectric Power Station and Lake Turkana Wind Power stand nearby, yet other parts of the country enjoy power sourced from here. We, on the other hand, remain in darkness." Senator Lomenen's concern resonated with many.
In response, CS Chirchir candidly acknowledged that the problem stemmed from one of the generators experiencing a malfunction, rendering it incapable of meeting the power demands of the region. He admitted to the procurement of a replacement but lamented the prolonged and cumbersome tendering process. "We had anticipated the installation of the new generator before the commencement of Senate Mashinani, but procedural hurdles have slowed the process. We must adhere to established rules," explained the CS before the attentive Senators.
However, amid these challenges, a ray of hope emerged in Chirchir's response. "We have, nevertheless, reevaluated our plans. Going forward, we will prioritize areas with substantial power production alongside those with high power market demand," he affirmed, hinting at a strategic shift in the allocation of electricity resources.
Furthermore, Chirchir disclosed an ongoing initiative to address the issues faced by regions still unconnected to the national grid, despite their crucial role in power production. The plan involves adjusting power to appropriate voltage levels to facilitate supply to these underserved areas.
In particular, he highlighted the 220KV line in Loyangalani, Marsabit, and Isiolo as focal points for imminent reticulation. These regions, along with their local communities, will soon enjoy the benefits of reliable power supply.