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The Ugandan government, with support from the African Development Bank (AfDB) and other partners, has launched the last-mile connectivity component under the Uganda Rural Electricity Access Project in Iganga in the eastern Luuka District
The Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development handed over electricity connection accessories to Uganda’s main power distribution company, UMEME Limited, to facilitate the connections of 87,500 rural households to affordable electricity.
AfDB, in September 2015, extended a US$100mn loan to the government for the project in addition to US$13mn from the European Union’s Africa Infrastructure Trust Fund.
The objective of the project is to provide reliable and affordable electricity to rural households, public institutions, and small and medium enterprises. Overall, the scheme will contribute significantly to meeting the country’s National Development Plan goal of increasing electricity access to 60%.
A household survey by the Uganda Bureau of Statistics indicates that the national electricity access rate has increased to 57%, comprising 19% and 38% on-grid and off-grid connections, respectively. The project is expected to be completed at the end of December 2022.
The Bank’s country manager, Augustine Kpehe Ngafuan, noted that besides promoting small and medium businesses, the availability of stable power would bolster service delivery, especially at health centres. “This will enhance the quality of maternal and child healthcare services in addition to supporting the government’s efforts in curbing the Covid-19 pandemic,” he said.