As part of African Development Bank supported project in South Sudan, 20,000 prepay meters will be supplied to new customers in the country’s capital, Juba.

The Power Distribution System Rehabilitation and Expansion Project, which is being supported with a US$26 million grant from the AfDB, is aimed to rehabilitate and expand the distribution networks in Juba. This will include the construction of 145 km of low voltage 33 kV lines and 370 km of medium voltage lines, and the installation of 195 transformer stations, as well as the connection of the 20,000 new customers.

“The current situation of low level of power generation, coupled with inefficient distribution networks, has adversely affected living standards of the population and restrained business development,” commented Alex Rugamba, director of the AfDB’s Energy, Environment and Climate Change Department. “The project will contribute to reduce the inefficiencies of the network and increase electricity access in Juba.”

Currently only about 1% of South Sudan’s estimated 10 million population has access to grid electricity, mainly in Juba and the other two main cities, Malakal and Wau.

This is the first donor-funded project undertaken by the power utility, South Sudan Electricity Corporation (SSEC), and staff will receive training in financial and project management as well as technical training in the use of similar technologies, which are likely to be used for other projects in the near future.