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Community Energy Malawi (CEM), with funding from Government of Malawi, UNDP and GEF continues to expand the 80 Kw Sitolo Solar Minigrid to the nearby areas of Ndawambe and Molosiyo. Initially, the project was only connected to 160 households, services and businesses in Sitolo area. However, due to its successful implementation, impact and management, the project is now being expanded to the two areas.

This is the largest solar minigrid in the country. The project has been a huge success with among others the growth of businesses that have transformed people’s lives. Some beneficiaries in Sitolo, for example, connected the electricity to their grocery shops. As a result, it expanded products they sell and business hours. In turn, this has had a huge turn around on their profits. Significantly, the area now has two solar powered Maize mills. Before this, villagers used to go to nearby Zambian villagers to mill their grain.

One of the technicians during the expansion works

However, people in the areas of Ndawambe and Molosiyo can now enjoy the same with expansion of the gird into their areas. According to CEM’s Country Director, Edgar KapizaBayani, 570 and 470 households, services and businesses are being connected in Ndawambe and Molosiyo, respectively. This development has seen the beginning of a Sunflower cooking oil refinery in Ndawambe. This will offer market opportunity to the many Sunflower farmers in the area.

Written by: Wonderful Mkhutche