Nay Pyi Taw vil­lages rewired in 100 days elec­tri­fi­ca­tion plan

The Myanmar Times - - News - SWAN YE HTUT swanye­htut@mm­

THE gov­ern­ment has ar­ranged to con­nect 1150 house­holds in Nay Pyi Taw’s Ot­tarathiri town­ship to the na­tional elec­tric­ity grid as part of the new ad­min­is­tra­tion’s 100-day plans, ac­cord­ing to U San Yu, deputy sec­re­tary of the Min­istry of Elec­tric­ity and En­ergy. The ini­tia­tive is part of a broader ef­fort to bring elec­tric­ity to more than 15,000 house­holds na­tion­wide over the pe­riod.

In ad­di­tion to the 12 ben­e­fi­ciary vil­lages in the Nay Pyi Taw Union Ter­ri­tory, vil­lages in Kayin and Kayah states, and Sa­gaing, Magwe and Aye­yarwady re­gions, are also see­ing hook-ups ar­ranged, the deputy sec­re­tary told The Myan­mar Times.

“One hun­dred per­cent of the electric lines are stretched to reach in front of the users’ houses by the depart­ment and 3311 [more] houses will get electric light­ing. The electric light­ing will be im­ple­mented in ac­cor­dance with the project after the houses have fixed me­ters,” he added.

Over the project pe­riod, a to­tal of 15,106 house­holds were tar­geted for elec­tri­fi­ca­tion, with only the 3311 homes re­main­ing.

U San Yu said the elec­tri­fi­ca­tion drive would re­quire US$310 mil­lion from a World Bank loan over the next two years, with 114 trans­form­ers to be in­stalled. Once the trans­form­ers are up and run­ning, a to­tal of 12,274 houses across 41 vil­lages in Ot­tarathiri town­ship and 8084 homes in 53 Dekkhi­nathiri town­ship vil­lages will have elec­tric­ity.

Though it has served as the na­tion’s pur­pose-built cap­i­tal since 2005, much of the Nay Pyi Taw Union Ter­ri­tory re­mains ru­ral and un­der­de­vel­oped.

Na­tion­wide, Myan­mar’s 2014 cen­sus found that just un­der one-third of the coun­try used elec­tric­ity for its main source of light­ing.

“Some houses have been fixed [to the elec­tric­ity grid] but some houses have not been fixed due to their busi­ness and vil­lages’ liv­ing con­di­tions. A place like Kachin [State] doesn’t want to use electric light­ing even though they have got­ten electric power. The power lines are strung in front of the houses but are not in use,” U San Yu told The Myan­mar Times.

A lack of aware­ness may also be a fac­tor.

July 7 marked the Na­tional League for Democ­racy gov­ern­ment’s 100th day in power. Crit­ics of the ad­min­is­tra­tion’s 100-day plans have said in­for­ma­tion on the ini­tia­tives has been dis­sem­i­nated in a hap­haz­ard way, or not at all, even as the 100-day mark was reached last week.

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