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Uganda gets first submarine power cable linking islands to grid

state Minister for Energy and Minerals development Mary Gorret Kitutu

Kalangala, Uganda |  THE INDEPENDENT |  The government has obtained a 32 billion shillings loan to construct a seven-kilometre power submarine cable connecting Kalangala district (Ssese islands) to the mainland at Masaka.

The sh32 billion loan has been secured from African Development Bank to construct the first power submarine cable and connect it to the national grid.

The power cable that is to run under the waters of Lake Victoria is expected to be completed in one year, according to contractors – CCC BEIJING INDUSTRIAL AND COMMERCIAL CO. LTD.

According to state Minister for Energy and Minerals development Mary Gorret Kitutu, the project is intended to lower tarrifs charged for power in Kalangala.

Kalangala Infrastructure Services Limited, the company responsible for supplying power on Buggala Island is charging over  825 sh per unit of used power.  The minister says this is over twice the charge paid elsewhere in the country so the cable will help lower the cost of doing business on the islands, economically empower the residents of Kalangala and boost it’s tourism sector.

Kitutu has appealed to contractors for considering local content in terms of job opportunities.

Buggala Island currently uses solar electricity from Kalangala Infrastructure Services Limited which residents say is rather costly.

Patricia Litho, the cooperate communication and community affairs officer in Rural Electrification Agency says, the project is not to compete Kalangala Infrastructure Services but rather to extend reliable services towards Kalangala community.

The marine life will not be affected neither the aquatic life since the cable has a thick insulation layer.

Over 1,142 households and 27 trading centers in Kalangala District on Buggala Island are to benefit from the project.

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