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Firm electrifies parts of Mulanje communities

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By Llywellenie Mpasa:

Over 1,600 households from Bondo and Kalamwa villages of Traditional Authority Mabuka in Mulanje District are benefiting from an uninterrupted off-grid micro-hydroelectricity, which is being generated by Mulanje Electricity Generation Agency Limited (Mega) through Lichenya River.

Minister of Energy Ibrahim Matola on Wednesday visited Mega Micro-HydroElectric Scheme for Rural Electrification at Bondo-3 in Mulanje to appreciate the gains and the challenges that energises for the provision of affordable, sustainable power supply options to rural Mulanje.

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Speaking after the tour, Matola said the off-grid micro-hydroelectricity is an economical and practical approach to generate electric power to fulfil energy demand in rural areas.

He said the infrastructure which is co-funded by the Scottish Government and Global Environment Fund, the UNDP and the department of energy affairs is part of the concerted effort by the government to significantly increase electricity coverage of the population.

“As power systems evolve, the need for accurate, intuitive small-scale projects like these becomes more and more important to enhance an increase in the accessibility to electricity especially to the hard-to-reach areas,” he said.

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He further said universal access to modern forms of energy is still far from being realised especially in villages and in areas where people cannot get connected to a national grid, often due to their remoteness, sparse population and relatively low average energy demands.

Mega Ltd Operations Manager Samuel Mambo says the company is generating 220 Kilowatts of Hydro-electric energy which is supplying power to different social amenities including Bondo Health center and 11 other schools.

“The objective of this project is to improve access to modern energy services and increase uptake in the energy mix in poor rural areas of Mulanje,” Mambo said.

The scheme, which has a capacity of generating 128 KW of electricity, provides power to over 1600 families of the villages throughout the year.

One entrepreneur, Emmanuel Sulupi a welder from Kalamwa village TA Mabuka said the scheme has contributed to the improvement of the living conditions of rural communities through sustainable access to electricity that is supporting their needs.

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