ENERGY Minister, Dr Medard Kalemani has ordered all contractors responsible with rural electrification to complete their respective projects by March, this year, failure to that they will face stern legal measures.
Dr Kalemani issued the directive here on Monday during a meeting with the Morogoro Regional Commissioner (RC) Loata Ole Sanare, district commissioners and the council’s executive directors.
“For those contractors who will fail to complete their work on time, the government will not hesitate to take legal measure as per the contractual terms,” said Dr Kalemani.
The minister argued that there should be no excuses as challenges such as enough equipment to cater for installation and electricity supply have been addressed.
The government has reduced the cost of installation in rural areas with people now required to pay only 27,000/- for the service and the minister encouraged the public to embrace the opportunity.
On the other hand, the minister also maintained that people should not be charged for electricity poles when supplied with electricity.
Dr Kalemani called upon the Morogoro RC to supervise the exercise and ensure that the rural electrification in the region is completed by March, this year.
“Do not hesitate to take measures against contractors who will defy the directive to complete their work on time,” he said, by dragging their feet, the contractors were delaying the people’s right for the important service.
Mr Sanare commended the minister for intervening in the matter, noting that people have been complaining about delayed REA projects.
The RC assured the minister that his office would closelyfollow up on the contractors’ performance and vowed zero tolerance against any negligence in the course of the project execution.
REA Project Manager in Morogoro, Eng Wingod Siyao guaranteed that the planned rural electrification would be completed within the minister’s ultimatum.
He said plans have been devised to ensure that all areas, including those with some difficulties are reached and supplied with power.
Eng Siyao disclosed that as of January, this year 70 out of 150 villages in Morogoro region had benefited with the REA project, whereas the target is to reach 90 villages by next March.
Rural Energy Agency (REA) Acting Director General, Mr Amos Maganga, revealed that by November, last year the rural electrification had reached 66 per cent countrywide.
He was addressing the media ahead of the survey on the productivity brought by the energy and rural electrification project, to be carried out by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
Mr Maganga said as of last October, 8000 out of the 12,268 villages countrywide, had been reached during the rural electrification projects.
Since 2008, the government dished out 2.3tr/- for the rural electrification projects, said Mr Maganga, revealing further that the remaining villages would be covered by the next, 2020/21, financial year.
After meeting the target, the agency in collaboration with the Ministry of Energy and NBS decided to conduct a survey to know how best the facility has improved socioeconomic welfare of the covered communities, he said.
Completion of the Rural Electrification Project Phase Three, round one was slated for December 31, 2019, which would pave way for round two of the project, scheduled to take off in January 2020.