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KPLC to phase out overhead cable transmission

By | May 25th 2010

By Philip Mwakio

Kenya Power and Lighting Company (KPLC) has announced plans to phase out overhead cables and replace them with underground ones.

KPLC Managing Director Joseph Njoroge said design and plan works for the new system have started.

"We are, already, on the design and planning stages and hope to have the project carried out in phases," said Eng Njoroge.

He said the planning and implementation aspect would take between four to five years from now. "Since we are still planning, the actual final costs cannot be revealed at this particular time but it is the range of billions," the MD said.

Njoroge spoke in Mombasa during the annual tourism symposium organised by the Kenya Association of Hotelkeepers and Caterers (Kahc). Overhead cabling that dominate electricity supply installation in the country have been found to be susceptible to various adverse impacts leading to frequent power outages and disruptions.

"With the installation of underground cables, we shall be able to reduce the rate of power interruptions which have led to huge business losses," he said.

Pilot phase

Njoroge said Mombasa Island has been earmarked as one of the first pilot phases alongside Nairobi’s Central Business District and Industrial area. The rest of the country would be covered gradually, he said. And reacting to the planned move, hoteliers hailed the action as timely but said it was long overdue.

Kahc Coast branch chairman Titus Kangangi said the idea is grand and will beautify the city.

"This is widely done overseas. It will enable trees grow to full maturity without having them felled due to overhead power lines," Kangangi who is also the General Manager of Sunrise Beach Resort Apartment& Spa said.

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