Over 1,000 Limbang Households to Light Up by 2023

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JUN 29 — Sarawak Energy Berhad is accelerating the delivery of rural electrification projects to ensure access to reliable and affordable electricty supply for the whole of Sarawak by 2025.

To this end, 200 households in Limbang division will receive 24-hour electricity by the end of 2021, with a further 866 households by 2023 to achieve full electrification for the entire division.

In a statement, Sarawak Energy said since 2009, about 18,000 rural households have been connected to reliable electricity supply in the mountainous Limbang division through the implementation of the Rural Electrification Scheme (RES).

This includes 250 remote households under the sarawak Alternative Rural Electrification Scheme (SARES), a stop-gap initiative that provides 24-hour electricity whilst conventional electricity via the grid makes it way to them.

These form part of the 150,000 rural households throughout Sarawak that have been lit up under various rural electrification strategies since 2009.

“There is consistent and continuous effort to ensure we are able to provide full electricity coverage for the Northern Region in the next few years,” said Datu Haji Sharbini Suhaili, Sarawak Energy Group Chief Executive Officer.

The Rural Electrification Scheme or RES involves extension of the grid system for rural households with road accessibility.

Utilities Minister Dato Sri Dr Stephen Rundi Utom said about 45 per cent of Sarawakians live in longhouses, kampongs or smaller rural towns.

Following the development of the Project Rakyat initiative, Rundi said they have been able to step up on electrification efforts.

“We are thankful to Sarawak Government and YAB Chief Minister that our plan has been supported with an allocation of RM2.37 billion to cover rural transmission and distribution projects as well the implementation of SARES in distant villages. Rural electrification coverage in Sarawak has risen to 95% in 2020 and is expected to reach 97% in the coming months.”

One of these efforts include the adoption of a new distribution system technology known as the medium voltage covered conductor to connect Lawas town to rural Ba’Kelalan, taking into account the area’s harsh geographical conditions.

Despite the many challenges which include logistics, villager acceptance and the current covid-19 pandemic, Rundi assured that his ministry is working closely with Sarawak Energy and is committed to ensuring rural Sarawak will have access to 24-hour reliable and affordable electricity.

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