The Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen) is examining the security situation in Ethiopia’s Tigray area before determining whether to evacuate 200 Kenyans who are drilling geothermal wells in Ethiopia.
KenGen Communication Manager Frank Ochieng’ stated that the company is constantly monitoring the situation with the government.
Mr Ochieng’ said all the workers in the two sites were safe and drilling was going on as planned even as reports emerged of communities fleeing the affected regions.
“We are assessing the situation but remain hopeful that the authorities in the two countries will speedily find a peaceful solution to the crisis,” he said.
This came as some of the workers expressed concern over the escalating clashes in the country involving government forces and Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF).
Already, the Ethiopian Cabinet has declared a nationwide state of emergency, cut communication in some parts of the country as the government called on residents to arm themselves.
Currently, KenGen is drilling 520MW in Tulu Moye in the Oromia Regional State and also in Aluto–Langano.
The National Police Service has issued a statement saying that the unrest in Ethiopia could adversely impact operations in Kenya and on the borders.
“The National Police Service has heightened security on the Kenyan border and citizens are advised to be vigilant and cautious in their surroundings,” read the statement in part.
Earlier, KenGen MD Rebecca Miano said that Sh700 million geothermal project in Ethiopia had entered a crucial stage.
In February 2019, KenGen won a joint contract with Shandong Kerui Petroleum Equipment Company and Shandong Kerui Oilfield Service Group to offer geothermal drilling services.
Kenya Electricity Generating Company PLC – KenGen is the leading electricity generation company in Eastern Africa region, with an installed generation capacity market share of more than 60%. The company’s primary business is to provide safe, reliable, and competitively priced electric energy for the country in an environmentally friendly and sustainable manner while creating value for its stakeholders.
Today, KenGen PLC has an installed generation capacity of 1,818MW, of which over 86% is drawn from green sources, namely: Hydro (826MW), Geothermal (713MW), Thermal (253MW), and Wind (26MW).