JICA for inclusive energy growth for Malawi

By Patricia Kapulula

The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) on Wednesday officially handed over the Lilongwe Old Town Substation, which includes expansion of Kanengo Substation, to Malawi Government through the Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (ESCOM).

Speaking during the handover, JICA President Dr Akihiko Tanaka expressed commitment to working with Malawi Government and other partners to bring inclusive, sustainable and self-reliant growth for the people of Malawi.

JICA President Dr Akihiko Tanaka and Malawi Minister of Agriculture Sam Kawale

He described the upgraded facility as important for Malawi’s development, saying it contributes to the improvement of power supply in the country thereby improving people’s livelihoods in Lilongwe City and surrounding areas.

“The reconstruction of the facility and related improvements to transformers will ensure it provides the Capital City with a sufficient and reliable supply of electricity for years to come.

This goes a long way in minimising blackouts so that citizens can enjoy a better quality life,” said Tanaka.

Receiving the infrastructure on behalf of government, Minister of Agriculture Sam Kawale said the upgraded substation marks a milestone in ensuring a stable and reliable power supply for Malawi.

“We need to generate enough electricity for us to reach 1,000 megawatts by 2025 and this is one way of doing that. This contributes to the Malawi 2063 through provision of reliable power supply,” he said.

Principal Secretary for Energy, Alfonso Chikuni, said the facility is a huge enhancement to transmission, as it makes the whole backbone reliable.

“Intermittent power supply will be dealt with and power will stabilise. A lot of benefits will come out of these investments,” said Chikuni.

ESCOM Chief Executive Officer Kamkwamba Kumwenda expressed gratitude for the infrastructure, saying it will go a long way in improving power supply in the city and surrounding areas.

The project will connect over 20,000 new customers.