KUCHING, July 31: Villages in the areas of Simunjan and Lubok Antu are next in the plan under the Rural Electrification Scheme (RES) Last Miles, with over 600 households due to be connected with reliable 24-hour electricity supply.
Minister for Utilities Dato Sri Dr Stephen Rundi Utom revealed that the project in Simunjan will light up over 200 households and a community hall upon its completion in 2021.
“The project in Engkari, which is due to commence in October, will extend the State Grid further into the remote area to light up 18 villages with almost 400 households when it is completed in 2022,” he said in a statement today.
Rundi reiterated the commitment to achieve the state government’s target of electrifying 97 per cent of rural Sarawak in the coming months and towards full electrification by 2025.
“By early 2021, about 5,000 more households will have access to reliable, renewable and affordable energy under RES, which is one of the initiatives under the Accelerated Rural Electrification Masterplan and part of Sarawak government’s People Project.
“The Ministry and Sarawak Energy are continuing with efforts to meet the target of full electrification for rural Sarawak by 2025, despite the challenges of the Movement Control Order (MCO) brought about by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic,” he added.
Prior to the commencement of rural electrification project works, the Utilities Ministry and Sarawak Energy had conducted dialogues with stakeholders including Resident and District Offices, government agencies, and beneficiary communities on the works involved.
RES beneficiary communities, he continued, are also eligible for the Assisted Wiring Scheme (AWS) which is a zero-interest installment payment assistance by Sarawak Energy where the cost of internal wiring is spread over three years and billed monthly in their utility bills.
“Unsafe internal wiring works or modifications carried out by unqualified electricians can damage electrical appliances and lead to fire incidents which is a frequent longhouse hazard,” he said, emphasising on the need for the appointment of registered wiring contractors.—DayakDaily