A MASSIVE street lighting programme has been rolled out countrywide with a pilot project being carried out in Harare where the installation of more than 1 200 new lights is currently underway.
The project, which will be cascaded to all the country’s cities, towns and growth points, is a product of President Mnangagwa’s engagement and re-engagement policy as well as his “Zimbabwe is Open for Business” mantra.
The project was initiated by President Mnangagwa and his Rwandan counterpart Paul Kagame and is expected to cover about 35 kilometres of Harare’s major road network.
As the Government steps up efforts to ensure safety and trafficability of the capital city’s roads, some have since been lit up including the busy Seke, Julius Nyerere, Joshua Nqabuko Nkomo (Airport), and Samora Machel Roads.
Under the ongoing exercise, there will also be the removal of the old existing cables and refurbishment of old street lighting poles.
As part of the project, there is going to be installation of a back office with a management system that monitors performance of street lights through controlling the switching on, lighting levels and dimming of the lights.
The system also enables the monitoring of performance, power consumption and it also picks up faults or vandalism simultaneously as it happens in real time from the back office.
Permanent Secretary for Harare Metropolitan Provincial Affairs and Devolution Mr Tafadzwa Muguti said for the first time in almost two decades, Harare, which has been dogged by maladministration, is now seeing progress under the Second Republic.
“President, thank you for your engagement and re-engagement efforts which have brought about the partnership between Zimbabwe and Rwanda.
“We will now start seeing, after 15 years, our roads having street lighting. Indeed, this is a smart city agenda that you are championing,” he said.
In a statement yesterday, Zesa’s Stakeholder Relations Department said the Government engaged the government of Rwanda for co-operation in various sectors including energy.
Zesa said this led to the signing of the inter-Utility Memorandum of Agreement between the Rwanda Energy Group (REG) and Zesa Holdings in which various areas of co-operation were agreed upon.
“This MOU was signed during a conference which was hosted by ZimTrade in Harare and the guest of Honour was the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe Dr Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa.
“One of the areas of co-operation is the National Public Street Lighting for Provincial Capitals which aims to see the Refurbishment, Upgrading and Installation of new Public Lighting Systems in all ten (10) Provincial Capitals,” reads the statement.
Zesa said, in partnership with Rwanda Energy Group, they have already kick-started a pilot project in Harare which has seen several streets lighting systems being installed.
“In line with the Government’s National Developments Strategy thrust, modalities and engagements have begun to spread the programme across the 10 provincial capitals,” said Zesa.
A local firm, Exodus, has been contracted to do the project.
With the new modern street lights, security cameras are also likely to be installed along streets so as to monitor roads.