(Ethiopian News Agency/editorial, May 30/2018)
Ethiopian Electric Utility (EEU) has introduced organizational and operational changes in order to rectify the electricity provision problem witnessed across the country. EEU Board Chairman Getahun Mekuria told journalist today that 11 deputy CEOs have been appointed for the newly opened offices in the nine regional states and two city administrations. The major duty of the 11 deputy CEOs is delivering efficient services and ensuring accountability in the respective regional states and cities, he said, adding that the reorganization will save time and help resolve problems promptly as they operate in close proximity. According to Getahun, all issues and demands have normally been directed to the headquarters causing delay and failure in serving the public. The Board Chairman said the reform will also create opportunity to check accountability with regional states and administrations, and work closely to solve problems related to rehabilitation programs of power distribution.
Getahun underlined that “overhaul of the leadership is an indication of our commitment to respond to the ever increasing demand of the public.”
Minister of Water, Electricity and Irrigation Sileshi Bekele said on his part modernizing electric utility and supporting it with advanced technology is critical to reduce mismanagement of resource, customer management, and proper collection of electric service bills.
The Minister stressed that there is a need to improve the financial power of Ethiopian electric utility to modernize the service, adding that “the financial support for Ethiopian Electric Utility has been insufficient. We have got only close to 375 million USD loan and donations for modernizing services and to work on off grids.”
Activities are being undertaking to get financial supports for off grid projects from World Bank, AfDB, and European Union with low-interest loan, it was learned.
According to Energypedia, only 27 % of the population in Ethiopia has access to electricity grid. This share is increasing due to an extension of the national grid on the one hand and an increasing number of stand-alone-systems and mini-grids on the other hand.