Biteko orders REA officials to get out of offices

GEITA: DEPUTY Prime Minister, who is also the Minister of Energy, Dr Doto Biteko has directed the Rural Electrical Agency (REA) executives to focus more on working in the villages instead of investing a lot of time holding meetings in towns.

Dr Biteko made the order on Tuesday after switching on electricity in Ihako village, at Katome Ward, Bukombe District of Geita Region, which is part of the REA project Phase Three, Round Two.

He said REA should focus on rural areas when evaluating, managing and implementing electricity projects in order to determine and address existing challenges to achieve improvements of supplying power countrywide.

“You are an electrical agency in the villages, not an electrical agency in towns, hold meetings with rural citizens, let’s see your cars moving around rural areas.

“Learn their language, identify their problems, right now, we want clean cooking energy, the people who are struggling with cooking energy are mostly those in rural areas, these are the ones you should deal with,” he said.

He promised that the government has set strategies to supply electricity to all Tanzanians without discriminating the value of their houses.

REA Director General, Engineer Hassan Saidy said the village of Ihako is among the 127 villages in Geita Region that will be electrified in the phase three, round two project. He said it is part of the 4,071 villages that are in the project nationwide.

The Bukombe District Council Executive Director (DED), Mr Lutengano Mwalwiba said that turning on electricity in Ihako ward will improve the performance of government activities in schools and public offices.

“Teachers used to travel more than 25 kilometers to Ushirombo town in order to work, but after electrification, things are going to be done more quickly,” he said.

The chairman of Ihako village in Katome district, Mr Nzalia Masayi said his village has about 500 residents who will benefit from electricity from four townships, and so far 60 households have been connected to electricity.

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