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Limited Consumption Strains Bukuzindu Power Station

The station located in Mugoye Sub County is the sole source of power across Bugala, the largest Island in Ssese. The hybrid station has a 0.6 megawatts 600 kilowatts solar energy component and 1.0 megawatts 1000 kilowatts of diesel fuel-fired thermal component.
Bukuzindu power station in Ssese Islands is the only source of power to Bugala residents

Audio 3

Limited power consumption in Kalangala islands is taking a toll on Bukuzindu Hybrid Power Station.

The station located in Mugoye Sub County is the sole source of power across Bugala, the largest Island in Ssese. The hybrid station has a 0.6 megawatts (600 kilowatts) solar energy component and 1.0 megawatts (1000 kilowatts) of diesel fuel-fired thermal component.

However, the peak consumption across the island stands at only 300 kilowatts, according to Aggrey Kawongolo, the operations and Maintenance Engineer of Bukuzindu Power station.

The Island with a population of over 50,000 people has only 2,600 connections, most of who are domestic consumers. Bidco's Palm oil plant is the only large scale consumer connected to the Bukuzindu grid.

Kawongolo says that as a result of the small load on the grid, equipment at the plant is suppressed usually resulting into occasional shutdown.

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John Opondo, the managing director of Kalangala Infrastructure Services Limited, the firm that manages the power station is optimistic that the technical shut downs will be resolved when consumption increases.

Opondo encourages private industrial establishments in Kalangala in terms of Infrastructural Development since they have established water, road and ferry services to boost transportation of goods and services.

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Ferdinand Muliro, a Kenyan National managing a carpentry workshop in Kalangala Town council says that during moments when the supply is stable, his is able to meet his weekly targets and complete furniture worth 10 million Shillings a week.

He has however asked Electricity Regulatory Agency-ERA to review the power tariff saying the unit cost is now too expensive for him.

// Cue in: "Naye nga ffe…

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