Minister of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining Aggrey Masi says Malawi Rural Electrification Programme (Marep) Phase 8 has finished electrifying all the 336 rural areas earmarked.
Speaking last week at Mwaye in Balaka during the switching on of Mwaye Powerline marking completion of Marep Phase 8, the minister advised people to avoid illegal connections.
He urged them to utilise the Ndawala initiative in which Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom) provides wiring and connection services on loan recoverable through electricity recharging vouchers.
“We know Marep is increasing demand for electricity, but on the supply side we have upgraded Nkula output from 24 to 36 megawatts, outsourced another 20 megawatts from Zambia and very soon we will be adding 50 megawatts to the national grid from Mozambique,” said Masi.
He said over and above the 336 areas already connected to the grid, additional 270 areas will also be connected.
Department of Energy acting director of energy Joseph Kalowekamo said Marep is a government initiative wholly funded through a 4.5 percent Malawi Rural Electrification Fund levy on liquid fuels, gas and electricity sales.
“The idea is to increase electricity coverage in urban and rural areas from the current overall 11 percent of the population to 30 percent by 2030,” he said. n