27 March 2013 – CEO of Namibia’s Electrical Control Board, Siseho Simasiku, says the 10th anniversary of private electricity distribution company Northern Electricity Distributor represents a milestone in the history of the transformation of that country’s electricity supply industry. "If we consider the financial resources availed to achieve this seemingly modest result, the value of this achievement grows even bigger," he is reported as saying by the Namibian newspaper, New Era.
Simasiku says by way of comparison, it is not a secret today that despite allocating astronomical financial resources, South Africa has failed dismally in its quest to establish Regional Electricity Distributors (REDs). He says the opponents of restructuring in South Africa exploited a constitutional loophole to thwart the process.
"This is regrettable because we are fully aware of the poor state of affairs in many South African municipalities and local authorities that now desperately rely on outsourcing electricity services to keep the lights on," Simasiku says, adding that he is not intentionally advancing excuses for complacency in the continued restructuring of the Namibian industry.
"I am simply saying, as an industry and as a nation, we deserve to pat ourselves on the back for this remarkable achievement, particularly in the face of stiff resistance, lack of initial capital and many other formidable challenges."
In the ten years of its existence Northern Electricity Distributor (Nored) has increased its network to encompass a customer base of 70,000 customers now connected to the electricity grid in Oshana Region. The number was 24,000 in 2003.