Uganda: Government Launches New Electricity Consumer Monitoring System

Kampala — Minister of Energy Mary Goretti Kitutu flipped a switch that unveils the home page of the electronic database information and management system (EDIMS).

She was launching the EDIMS on Monday, a system that is expected to curtail the carbon emissions produced by use of fossil fuels in the country.

"This application supports the validation of emissions reduction generated through the connection of households to the grid and replacement of fossil-based lighting," she said adding that will track areas currently connected to the grid and those that are not in an effort to increase connections.

Access to electricity including off grids currently stands at 51 per cent with 38 per cent in the rural areas.

The digital system will also indicate efficiency of different electricity sub-sector players by the scope of connections they have made.

Addressing journalists at the launch, Mr Godfrey Turyahikayo, Rural Electricity Agency (REA) executive director said the system seeks to improve connectivity in the country through tracking consumers on the network.

The system through monitoring customers, he also noted could be used to detect power theft through changes in consumption in different areas.

"Our ability to get information is very fast, in real time and we shall plan and see how to serve them better," he said noting that the project that lasted three years consumed $800,000 which was a grant from World Bank.

Carbon emissions

As talks on climate change amass more weight from different countries, carbon initiation for development programme Ci Dev programme by World Bank under which EDIMS was financed and technically supported targets to reduce carbon emissions.

In the same spirit, the WB committed to purchase the carbon emissions reduction realised through increasing electricity connections through the project from 2017 to 2024.According to Mr Anthony Thompson, WB country manager, the revenues acquired from the carbon emission reductions will be used to procure ready boards to further increase electricity connections in the rural areas.ConnectionsReiterating the WB, the minister urged all electricity players citing Umeme to increase electricity connections in the country.Already, 230,000 connections have been added to the grid through the Electricity Connections Policy which seeks to connect 300,000 new customers annually.On the other hand, to curb limitations of finances to wire houses, a prerequisite under the ECP policy, government with the aid of World Bank has connected 15,000 customers in rural and slum areas have been connected through ready board technology.

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