By Andrew Mkonda, MANA
Minister of Energy, Atupele Muluzi says government is making strides in improving access to electricity in rural areas through the Malawi Rural Electrification Program (MAREP).
Muluzi was speaking at Chiwondo Primary school Ground in Karonga during a switching on ceremony of Chiwondo Extended MAREP phase eight power line.
He said it is the wish of the government that people in all rural areas across the country have access to electricity as a way of spurring opportunities for businesses which can lead to poverty reduction.
“Electricity brings development. And as government, we are committed to improving people’s livelihoods by making sure that people in rural areas have access to electricity,” said Muluzi.
He said it was impressing to see that 234 rural areas in the north have already benefited from MAREP and 30 of them are in Karonga District.
Paramount Chief Kyungu applauded government for the development saying it would go a long way in improving economic status of people in rural areas thereby reducing mass migration to cities and towns.
Kyungu also said the initiative would attract a lot of development projects in the area and reduce expenses which people used to incur in search for some services that require electricity such as maize mills and repairing of mobile phones among others.
“I am quite pleased with what the government has done today in Karonga. It is my wish that the program should continue so that more people across the country benefit from it,” said Kyungu.
MAREP is aimed at increasing access to electricity in rural and peri-urban communities in the country in a bid to transform rural economies. About 846 rural areas across the country are to benefit from MAREP phase 8.