Parliament should increase budget for off grid solar

Monday March 4 2019

An aerial view of  the Tororo solar po

An aerial view of the Tororo solar power plant. COURTESY PHOTO 

In the electricity sub-sector, significant developments have been registered with electricity access increasing to about 20.4 per cent of the households, according to Uganda National Population and Housing Census. Ugandan Parliament approved Shs2.4 trillion of 2018/2019 National Budget to continue the implementation of several power projects such as the construction works of Karuma and Bujagali hydropower projects with the aim of increasing access to electricity connections. Under the Global Energy Transfer Feed in Tariff, constructions that included the 10MW Soroti and Tororo solar power plants and the 20MW pilot solar park in Kabulasoke, which was recently commissioned with the objective of increasing electricity access.
The government also launched the electricity connections policy as part of the efforts to increase electricity access across the country, but the high electricity tariffs have made small improvements of the project. The electricity access, according to the Ministry of Energy statistics, remains low at about 20 per cent for all forms of energy.
However, reports have shown that water bodies are vulnerable to the effects of climate change, including long dry spells that see water levels drastically reduce, which in turn affect the generation capacity of the hydroelectric dams. This is where the need for government investments in off-grid solar energy comes in.
Patrick Edema,