Faulty ma­chines lead to Man­dera black­outs

The county will gen­er­ate so­lar-pow­ered elec­tric­ity to sup­ple­ment cur­rent sup­ply

The Star (Kenya) - - Counties Northeastern - STEPHEN ASTARIKO @stephenAs­tariko

The fre­quent power out­ages in Man­dera town have been linked to faulty ma­chines and in­creased de­mand for elec­tric­ity.

Kenya Power county man­ager Ali Ibrahim told the press on Sun­day that the cur­rent ma­chines pro­duc­ing diesel-gen­er­ated elec­tric­ity are too old.

The com­pany has no op­tion but to ra­tion power to cus­tomers who are now more than 8,000, he said.

Through the gov­ern­ment’s free power con­nec­tion in the area, more than 6,000 new cus­tomers are be­ing con­nected to power but the pro­duc­tion ca­pac­ity re­mains the same.

The cur­rent ca­pac­ity is 2.5MW as two gen­er­a­tors ac­quired re­cently from Garissa are faulty and too old to make any dif­fer­ence in the quan­tity of power be­ing gen­er­ated, Ibrahim said.

He said the plant will re­ceive a 500KW gen­er­a­tor from the Lamu Laps­set pro­gramme to ease the high power de­mand. Seven power gen­er­a­tors at the sta­tion are be­ing ser­viced, Ibrahim said.

The county has started so­lar-pow­ered en­ergy gen­er­a­tion ini­tia­tives to com­ple­ment the cur­rent diesel-pro­duced power, Ibrahim said.

Dur­ing the Mashu­jaa Day cel­e­bra­tions on Thurs­day last week, Gover­nor Ali Roba blamed Kenya Power for not pro­duc­ing enough elec­tric­ity for res­i­dents’ do­mes­tic use.

He asked the En­ergy min­istry to fast track ini­tia­tives to end the cur­rent power short­age.

Roba said the out­ages are a threat to se­cu­rity as al Shabaab will have a con­ducive en­vi­ron­ment to at­tack un­der cover of dark­ness.


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