Nay Pyi Taw villages rewired in 100 days electrification plan
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.