Rural Electrification Authority (REA) has moved to save the
government of Sh1.8 billion that had earlier been earmarked for
installation of electronic signages in all schools covered by
its electrification program.
Speaking in Mombasa while inspecting ongoing work to connect
electricity at the Dingirikani Primary School, Kisauni
constituency, one of the beneficiaries of the nationwide primary
school electrification program, REA chairman, Dr. Simon Gicharu
said that REA board and management has taken the decision to
shelve the program.
“It would be wastage of resources. We instead would wish to
see the funds allocated to light up more classes, buy text
books, improve general infrastructure of existing rural
communities where REA has undertaken electrification
projects,” Dr Gicharu who was accompanied by REA Coast
Regional co-coordinator, Mr Frederick Nyamai said.
According to Dr Gicharu, the cost of production and
installation of the electronic signage that were to be mounted
in all the 21,000 primary schools which were connected to the
national electricity grid by REA is Sh87,660 per signage.
Cost of producing one signage is given as Sh33,000 while
mounting of the same including for grid areas is given as
Gicharu said that they are working to meet the set deadline of
April 30, 2015 so as to have all schools in the project lit up.
“President Uhuru Kenyatta is very passionate on having this
project materialize and we as REA have taken it up upon
ourselves to ensure that we deliver as per the Presidential
directive,” he said.
the same time, the chairman lauded women contractors who have
landed jobs with REA in the nationwide primary school
electrification for doing a commendable job.
“They have proved to be diligent in their work and we hope
to have a long lasting relation with them alongside the
other male contractors who have done a good job too,” Dr
said that at least 10 contractors have been blacklisted by the
authority for shoddy work and unethical instances and will not
be allowed to do jobs belonging to REA.
“We are a professional body and observe one of the highest
standards of operations when it comes to contracts. Our
strict rules of engagement have to be followed to the latter
by all and sundry” the chairman said.
Gicharu, a career educationist himself, is called for the
enactment of safety drills and survival skills in all learning
institutions to prepare students to face any eventualities while
at their institutions.
“We regret the loss of life at the University of Nairobi,
Kikuyu campus where an electric transformer exploded and the
explosion was mistaken for an attack by assailants
triggering panic and causing a stampede,” he said.
added if there was adequate drill on safety and life skills,
there could be very minimal injuries sustained at the