The Ugandan government intends to export Karuma electricity to South Sudan.
The government intends to export excess energy generated by the Karuma hydroelectric project to South Sudan.
Last week, Ms Ruth Nankabirwa, the minister for Energy and Mineral Development, said that the government would construct power substations in Elegu, Amuru District, to sell surplus energy.
Ms Nankabirwa commented during a groundbreaking ceremony for the Karuma HPP Community Development Action Programme (CDAP) Phase I work at Purongo Primary School in Nwoya District.
CDAP is a government-funded initiative designed to alleviate the additional strain on local social infrastructure and livelihoods caused by building the Karuma and Isimba hydropower dams.
The Shs3 billion project comprises two classroom facilities, an office, four staff homes, and ventilated upgraded pit latrines at Purongo Primary School.
“We don’t use all of the energy, but we [the government] need the money. “We will export power to South Sudan via Tororo District, same as we have done with Kenya,” she added.
Ms Nankabirwa said that once the program is launched, the people should refrain from politicizing it since the funds collected would assist the government pays off its debts.
According to the minister, a significant amount of energy is obsolete.
“We just travelled to Moroto District, where there is an 80MW substation that is not being utilized. Only 1.5 per cent of it is being used,” she said.
The Energy chief also warned the media that vandalism has continued to obstruct the development and completion of the Karuma Hydropower project.
The $1.7 billion Karuma hydropower project’s completion and commissioning date has been moved back to June 22, 2022. The dam’s construction is now at 98.8 per cent completion.
The electricity is evacuated through three main high voltage transmission lines in the project. The 400 kilovolts (KV) Karuma to Kawanda line (248kms) is at 98.22 per cent completion, while the 400KV Karuma to Olwiyo Town in Nwoya (55kms) and the 132KV Karuma to Lira (75kms) are at 95.74 per cent and 81.96 per cent completion, respectively.
The project will build four substations at the Karuma site, which is now at 97.73 per cent complete, Kawanda (97.93 per cent), Olwiyo (76.10 per cent), and Lira (76.10 per cent) (97.73 per cent).
According to the Umeme website, the distribution infrastructure consists of 161 terminal points with Uganda Electricity Transmission Company at their 20 substations; Umeme’s 69 distribution substations; 15,564 kilometres of medium voltage network, 14,014 kilometres of distribution transformers, and 21,788 kilometres of low voltage network, including 1.5 million metering points.
The network distribution activities are divided into two parts: Kampala and upcountry, which are further divided into 13 technical engineering areas.
Umeme provides 97 per cent of Uganda’s power, supplying 1.5 million clients comprised of residential families, commercial small and medium businesses, and industrial consumers.