On Friday 17 May 2019,Hon. Claver GATETE, Minister of Infrastructure, officially inaugurated Gabiro substation built in Gatsibo District to improve power supply power in the Eastern Province, especially in Gatsibo and Nyagatare Districts.
Rwanda's energy sector continues to grow in all chain of power supply, from electricity generation, transmission and distribution infrastructure. Rwanda’s prime targets by the year 2024 include 100% access to electricity in Rwanda, addition of over 300 MW to the current installed generation capacity as well as a strengthened distribution and transmission network eradicating blackouts and reducing power losses up to 15%.
Recently, several substations were built to improve the network in the Western and Northern Provinces and the City of Kigali. Today, the distribution and transmission network in Rwanda is composed of 27 substation and the target is to have at least 44 by 2024.
A big part of the Eastern Province was previously being supplied by one feeder from Kabarondo substation up to Kagitumba passing by Kayonza (KKK). Given the long distance of the feeder and the development in the area which increased the number of big and small electricity consumers, KKK feeder was overloaded resulting into frequent trippings and delays in network restoration.
As a solution to this issue, Rwanda Energy Group initiated a project to build a new 110/30kV substation in Gatsibo District (at Gabiro) and extend the existing Musha Substation and connect them to a new transmission line from Rulindo to Musha. The objective was to form an Eastern Ring Network leading to improved reliability and quality of power supply to customers and reduction of losses.
Gabiro substation, now completed and already energized has sectioned the former long distance KKK feeder into three major feeders which are Nyagatare, Kiziguro and Ngarama. Faults on any of these feeders will be easy to find and repaired, hence ensuring the reliability and quality of power supply to the customers.
The former KKK feeder was sectioned as follows:
• Kiziguro feeder that is now originating from Gabiro and supply power to different areas of Gatsibo District. The installed Line disconnector at Kizuguro separates it from the one coming from Kabarondo Feeder.
• Nyagatare feeder is supply power to all parts of Nyagatare district and surrounding areas nearby Gabiro substation.
• Ngarama feeder Supply power to different parts of Ngarama sector in Gatsibo District
Gabiro substation is one of the 7 substations recently completed all over the country ensure a better quality and reliability of the Rwanda’s electricity supply. Among other improvements made to improve the grid include an automated computation system to consistently monitor outages duration and frequency levels for timely interventions.
The Chief Executive Officer of REG, Eng. Ron Weiss said that this project this project is part of a bigger plan to ensure a more reliable network across the country.
“In a bid to improve reliability of the power supply and reduce power losses, we have developed a clear plan build new transmission lines and new substation which will strengthen our transmission network and reduce power losses. In terms of loss reduction, we’ve been able to reduce the loss to 19.6% from 23% in 2013 and we have hope to reduce this leakage at least by 1% this year thanks to such projects.” he said.
The Minister of Infrastructure, Claver GATETE appreciated the achievement and said that it will boost the development in the two Districts which used to have an issue of frequent power cuts.
“Nyagatare is one of the six secondary cities selected for the promotion of urban development outside of the capital city where we have industries, hotels, as well as livestock husbandry and milk processing. This substation will help us to ensure that electricity supply is good enough to facilitate businesses and attract investors not only in Nyagatare, but also its neighboring districts” he said.
Today, about 51% of Rwandan households have access to electricity while the installed generation capacity is 221.1MW.
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