Kenya Power plans to connect one million additional customers to the national grid this financial year representing 36 percent growth in its customer base, the Company’s Managing Director Dr. Ben Chumo says. Dr Chumo said the Company will build on last year’s success to accelerate the rate of connections which saw the company record 443,000 new customer connections up from 307,000 recorded the previous year.

He said the Company will allocate adequate resources to maintain high rate of connectivity in the coming years as part of demand creation for the 5,000 MW additional capacity envisioned by the government and help attain 70% electricity penetration by the year 2020 (up from the current 32 percent).  Dr Chumo was speaking today at a media briefing session in Athi River where he witnessed a Sh159 million power upgrade project aimed at stabilizing power supply to customers in Nairobi’s rapidly growing satellite towns of Athi River, Kitengela, Namanga, Machakos and Mlolongo.

Citing a recent agreement signing with Jamii Bora Bank as an example, Dr. Chumo said Kenya Power is working with various financial institutions to develop appropriate loan facilities to assist potential customers pay for the new connection. The Company has similar arrangements with Equity Bank and the National Bank of Kenya in addition to its own Stima Loan managed as a revolving fund. In July 2014,  Kenya Power announced that it  would receive Sh3.6 billion (30 million Euros) from the French Development Agency (AFD) and the European Union (EU) to connect approximately 300,000 electricity customers through the Stima Loan arrangement in the next four years.