PARLIAMENTARIANS from Buhera – which is an entirely communal district – have lauded Government for intensifying rural electrification, saying the programme was ameliorating economic and social emancipation of previously marginalised communities.
In separate interviews on the sidelines of commissioning of the Chirozva Electrification Project recently, the legislators concurred that availability of electricity in rural areas will halt rural to urban migration and facilitate employment creation in the district. Buhera Central MP Cde Ronald Muderedzwa said this will improve the living standards in rural communities.
“This is going to uplift the living standards of people in the rural areas. It brings about balanced development of rural and urban areas. If electricity is brought to the rural areas, it will enhance creation of job opportunities like welding among youths. The number of youths migrating to towns in search of jobs has been worrying, so this (electrification) is going to play a critical role in discouraging rural-urban migration,” said Cde Muderedzwa.
Buhera South legislator Cde Joseph Chinotimba said the Ministry of Energy and Power Development led by Dr Samuel Undenge should continue empowering marginalised rural communities.
“This is a monumental achievement and we are very grateful. We never imagined electricity being available in this part of the district. The development will make it easier for villagers in Buhera South to have electricity in their homes. What Government is doing through the Rural Electrification Fund (REF) is fantastic, and all Government ministries should emulate such initiatives as this will scale our country to dizzy heights. What has happened at Chirozva Business Centre is excellent,” said Cde Chinotimba.
Buhera West MP Cde Oliver Mandipaka said people in rural areas have a right to be connected to electricity to broaden their livelihoods.
“This is the kind of development that people in rural communities want. What REF is doing instils people’s confidence in Government. It makes them realise that Government has them in mind by implementing its policies at grassroots level. If Government continues to do this, people will continue to be happy. The electrification shows that Government is not theoretical but practical in the implementation of its policies. This is an example of what an efficient Government should to its people,” he said.
In Buhera, the Rural Electrification Fund has covered Murambinda A, St Alban’s, Nyamasanga and Chirozva primary schools, Murambinda B and St Alban’s secondary schools as well as Mudawose Clinic and Chirozva Business Centre.
Institutions such as Bhegedhe primary and secondary schools, Nechikowa primary and secondary schools, Tapedzwa Primary and Mudanda Secondary schools, St Benard’s and Mudanda clinics, Chimuvhuri and Mudanda Agritex offices, Vhiriri Ministry of Health offices and Zenda Chitaitai group scheme are set to be switched on early next year.
In Manicaland, the fund has so far electrified 1 657 institutions, of which 218 are in Buhera. The fund recently completed work on the Rural Energy Masterplan, which once adopted, will become the national plan for the provision of modern energy to all rural areas in Zimbabwe.