Nairobi, Kenya — ESI-AFRICA — 24 November 2011 – Industrial and domestic power consumers in some parts of Kenya could find themselves without power for a week or more, following massive storm destruction in the country.
The “Nairobi Star” quotes Kenya Power as saying that damage in some areas was too extensive, and could not be repaired immediately. This could translate into major financial losses for businesses. It added that consumers all over Nairobi had complained about power blackouts since Sunday, after a heavy downpour. The storm also exposed residents to floods that could leave businesses with huge losses.
The power interruptions came as both domestic and industrial consumers are grappling with high costs of electricity because of high fuel cost and supply shortages
“One of the substation’s transformers was extensively damaged and will take the company about a week to repair or replace,”, said the Kenya Power statement. The company planned to transfer the customers to alternative load feeders as the repair works continued.
The Energy Regulatory Commission said yesterday that it was considering licensing other power distributors to compete with Kenya Power.
Speaking on the sidelines of a Kenya geothermal conference, ERC director-general Kaburu Mwirichia said it was a misconception that Kenya Power was a monopoly distributor. Anyone could apply to be a distributor, especially in areas that were under-served.
“We haven’t specifically got people who want to come in and establish distribution systems and sell to the public, but we are saying it is possible,” Mwirichia told The Star.