More communities to access free power from Ulawa hydro project

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By Lionel Taorao, in Ulawa

Electric poles along the Haraina main road .

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More communities on Ulawa Island in the Makira Ulawa province will soon have access to the constituency’s hydro power electricity project on the island.

The project which started on 2015 is now in its second stage; extension of electricity coverage and electrical workers are now extending the power supply to other nearby communities.

The Ulawa Ugi Constituency Development Officer (CDO) Mr. Alvin Pehu says that the plan is to extend the power supply coverage around Ulawa Island, but for now, they will focus first on one side of Ulawa.

“For this year, in the hydro project’s second phase, we will extend the coverage to one side of Ulawa; from Suu moli to Arona as for now, but the plan is to have the island of Ulawa covered and that is the constituency’s goal”, he adds.

Pehu also adds that they are taking it step by step as the progress also depends on the availability of funds from the Solomon Islands Government, SIG.

“Work on the hydro project depends on the availability of funds from the Solomon Islands Government (SIG) and the funds from the People’s Republic of China (PRC) to the constituency”, he further adds.

“For instance, the constituency is yet to receive grants from the SIG and this also is one contributing factor for the delay into the work progress of the project”, he continues.

The Ulawa/ Ugi Constituency Development Officer (CDO) also confirmed that this project costs millions of dollars however, they will still continue on with the project as well as kicking off another hydro project for Ugi Island as soon as the constituency office receives grants from the Solomon Islands government, SIG.

“On the same note, we will also commence work on the first phase of the constituency’s proposed Ugi hydro Project soon and that is the constructing of the dam and turbine house which will be built at Hakanipua, on Ugi Island”, he confirmed.

The electrical work supervisor on the Ulawa hydro project, Willie confirmed that many more houses will soon to have connections from this electricity grid for use as work is still on progress.

The Ulawa hydro project now reaches Haraina community in north of Ulawa island, approximately about four kilometers from the location of the turbine house.

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