, NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 4 – Only Five hundred and five primary schools out of 22,599 are yet to be connected to the power grid as of January 31 this year.
Releasing the data provided by the Rural Electrification Authority (REA) and Kenya Power, Energy Cabinet Secretary Charles Keter said connectivity in the schools should be completed in two weeks time.
Wiring works have been completed in 4,591 schools and are awaiting inspection by Kenya Power before switch-on, while metering is being done on 630 primary schools.
“I think with the work they have already done, and if indeed there are 505 schools remaining, I have no doubt they will finish in the given new deadlines,” Keter said adding that the project has not been able to beat previous deadlines due to delay in disbursement of funding.
The project which cost Sh29 billion was started in July 2013 and was expected to be completed by June 2015.
Keter, who spoke after meeting members of the Parliamentary Energy Committee, REA and Kenya Power bosses, was firm that the remaining work must be done in a fortnight.
“We want to operate this ministry in a very transparent way. There have been incidences where a project unnecessarily takes a whole year. We want to avoid that. REA and Kenya Power have strict instructions on this. No wastage of time and materials,” he warned.
So far, 16,873 primary schools have electricity with 3,678 connected through solar power.
Keter said his ministry will soon write to the Education and Interior Ministries to confirm that indeed the data provided coincides with what is on the ground.
The primary school electrification project was initiated in readiness for the government programme aimed at integrating ICT delivery at the primary level of education by providing all class one children in all primary schools with laptops.
After, electrification of the primary schools, REA is expected to focus on completing connecting all main public facilities by the end of 2016 and extending connections to all domestic households by the year 2017.