Rural communities in the country can afford a smile following government’s decision to introduce Ndawala Loan Initiative which would enable electricity consumers have their units connected and wired by the Electricity Supply Commission of Malawi (ESCOM) through a loan facility.
Chief Director in the Ministry of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining, Chimwemwe Banda made the disclosure recently during the switch on of Kanyimbi power line under Malawi Rural Electrification Program (MAREP) 8 in Nsanje.
Banda said rural communities in the country should not be panicking on how the electricity can be tapped into their houses, explaining that government has introduced an initiative called ‘Ndawala’ to assist rural communities to get connected and benefit from MAREP.
“Those who cannot do their own wiring or connections because they have no money, government has introduced Ndawala Loan Initiative so that ESCOM can do the work for them. The agreement will be that small deductions would be made from the electricity units they will be buying after being connected,” Banda said.
The chief director was optimistic that with the initiative, most Malawians living in rural areas would have the opportunity to access electricity.
Banda, therefore, advised communities in the areas where MAREP has been introduced to liaise with ESCOM authorities so that they strike a deal for connections and understand the procedures to have that deal sealed.
“Go to ESCOM district offices and tell them that you want to be connected to electricity through Ndawala initiative. They will assist you with due respect as ESCOM has transformed,” said Banda.
One of the community members in the area of Group Village Head Kanyimbi in Senior Chief Tengani, Molly Thove said most of the people in the area would benefit from the initiative.
Thove observed that most of the people in rural areas cannot afford to pay connection and wiring costs at once, hence being proud of the Ndawala Loan Initiative.
“I am sure that with the initiative, most of us will be connected to electricity. We are very thankful to government for ensuring that people in rural areas should have access to electricity regardless of our economic status,” said Thove.