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Kenya power company goes digital

GITHUNGURI, Kenya, Apr 18- The Kenya Power and Lighting Company (KPLC) has initiated a digital mapping project worth Sh259 million aimed at improving the company’s operations and customer service.

The project, known as Facilities Database, entails the use of a Geographical Information System application to collate and manage digitally stored data regarding KPLC’s customers and electricity facilities.

Speaking during a test launch at Githunguri in Kiambu County, the company’s Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Eng. Joseph Njoroge said the project is one of the various ventures that the company has embraced to enhance speed and efficiency in its service to its customers.

“It will ease and speed up design of projects. Designers will not be required to physically visit the premises of a person applying for power supply as they will be able to locate a customer’s location on spatial maps from their offices,” Eng Njoroge said the system will help the company remotely identify and locate customers with ease and locate faults along its transmission and distribution network thereby reducing repetitive visits to customer premises.

Consequently, that will reduce the period taken to give power applicants the quotations for supplying electricity to their premises, which in turn will reduce the connection period,” he added.

Eng Njoroge revealed that the company is at an advanced stage of compiling all relevant data which include customer premises, meters, meter boards, power lines, transformers, substations, and offices.

He reported that the company has, at the same time, initiated a Sh20 billion underground cabling project in Nairobi, Kisumu and Mombasa.

The project involves conversion of overhead power lines to an underground system so as to enhance reliability and quality of power supply to customers. The company is also launching a process of automating its power distribution in Nairobi and Mombasa at a cost of Sh500 million, he added.

 Upon completion, the project will facilitate the efficient monitoring and quick resolution of disturbances in the power network in order to minimise interruption of electricity to customers.

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In addition, Eng Njoroge said the company has commenced a national pre-paid metering rollout that entails installation of about 250,000 meters at customers’ premises by December 2011 at a total cost of Sh2.4 billion.

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