Lamu Island. Pic credit: luomoconlavaligia.it
Lamu Island. Pic credit: luomoconlavaligia.it

In Kenya, a small town on Lamu island, Lamu Town, has for the first time received electrical power, enabled through a government initiative.

The Kenyan government invested $2.5 million in two diesel-powered power plants to light up two islands in Lamu County, Standard media reported.

Lamu Town gets grid-connected

The power stations, which were commissioned by the Rural Electrification Authority (REA) over the weekend, are located at Faza and Pate islands.

Both islands, which are off-grid, have an estimated population of just over 30,000 who rely predominantly on fishing as their primary means of economic activity, media reported.

According to REA chairman, Simon Gicharu, the plants have an installed capacity of 450kVA and were constructed at a cost of $1 million.

Media reported that a further $1.2 million was used towards connection works, bringing the total cost to $2.5 million.

The island has traditionally relied on kerosene oil lamps for light; however, the need for cold storage facilities has been at the top of the priority list for the island's inhabitants.

Momentous occassion

According to Gicharu, it was a momentous occassion when the two islands and surrounding fishing villages finally “emerged into the light," media reported.

On visiting the island, Gicharu was impressed with developments in the local primary schools, which had been connected to power through the nationwide REA initiative, and now had established boarding facilities.

"Pupils are able to have more time in school studying as a result of availability of power and the digital e-learning process is now being actualised,’’ said Gicharu.

 

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Featured image: Lamu Island. Pic credit: luomoconlavaligia.it