Basil plans to light up rural areas

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MINISTER for Communications, Information Technology and Energy Sam Basil, pictured, says it is sad that only 13 per cent of the country’s population have access to electricity.
Speaking yesterday in Port Moresby at the launching of the Government’s K5 million plan to light up at least 1000 households in the country this year, Basil said: “Though electricity became publicly available since 1963, access to electricity in the country is a meagre 13 per cent and this is a sad story and a sad reality.
“But the other half of the story is that bulk of the 13 per cent accessibility is centred only in the urban settings and not spreading out into the rural communities.
“This is a sad reality and we must change this perspective of limited access to electricity services by our people and focus on universal access to the bulk of our people in rural areas.”
Basil said to start the process of changing the perspective, and in line with the Rural Electrification Policy and the rollout plan, 1000 households would be connected with power this year.
“While the initial rollout plan now is to have 250 households per region connected, should open MPs respond favourably in some areas, these installations could be doubled or even more,” he said.
Basil said the project would target households that were beneath transmission or distribution lines.
“Connections will be made through the use of minimum supply kits (MSK) in all types of houses – whether permanent, semi-permanent or bush material,” he said.
“The MSK will comprise an Esipay meter, a thermal circuit breaker of 16amps, and two dual three-pin power points.
“This will allow easy mobility or connection of the installations when there is a change of houses.”

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