المرصد السوري لحقوق الانسان
The Syrian Observatory For Human Rights

With support of the Salvation Government | Turkish private company accomplishes last stages of providing power supply to Idlib

In cooperation with the “Salvation Government”, a Turkish private company works on establishing power grid and providing Idlib with electricity.

 

The Turkish company has made much progress at the level of providing the logistic equipment and materials and has accelerated its efforts until it reached the final stages of the project today, a few months after power supply reached Harem Power station to test the station’s readiness. Accordingly, electric current is expected to reach Idlib in a few days.

 

“Salvation Government” work is limited to facilitate the project’s work, removing the destroyed electrical towers and then recollect and send it to the Turkish company, in return for money.

 

“Green Energy”, the Turkish company, has issued a circular on April 29, warning civilians of Idlib and nearby villages to keep a distance from the power lines, since they would be fed by the electric current after many years of a power cut.

 

Residents in Idlib and nearby villages depend on solar power for generating electricity, where solar panels connected to batteries are installed to provide light to homes and operate few electronic devices. It is worth noting that one solar panel costs 50 USD, while the price of batteries ranges from 70 to 250 UDS, according to their size, quality and type, and these prices are unaffordable by the many

 

Residents there depend also on fuel-operating electrically-generated amperes, where electricity is available for four hours daily at 50 Turkish Lira per month. On the other hand, it is expected that after the delivery of electricity from Turkey to Idlib and the installation of meters, a fee ranging from half a Lira to one Turkish Lira will be set for a kilowatt of consumption, which means one family is expected to pay 150 to 200 Turkish Lira per month.

 

Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) activists reported opinions of some residents in different areas in Idlib on the project. The people were divided with some are welcoming and others, particularly displaced residents, are opposing the delivery of electricity to homes for a monthly fee, citing the prices are above their capabilities.

 

A man known initially by “M.A.”, living in Kafar Takharim town northwest of Idlib after being displaced with a family of four from northern Hama countryside said “I will use the project’s power for a short time until I decide either to use it or to use the solar panels based on the prices. I expect that many of the indigenous and displaced residents in Idlib will not be able to afford the expenses of the power generated from the Turkish project, and they will not depend on it. They will prefer to use the less-priced solar-generated power though it doesn’t provide enough power.”

 

Another lady known by her initials as “M.H.” from Maarrat al-Nu’man city in south Idlib countryside and now liveing in one of Deir Hassan camps sees the project good for providing electricity, but the timing is bad because it coincides with the deteriorating economic conditions in north Syria region where the residents cannot afford high expenses of the bills. M.H. told SOHR “not only residents in the camps wouldn’t likely benefit from the project, but also the houses renters aren’t in better conditions to pay 200 Turkish Lira per month.”

 

The woman reiterated “the project would generally benefit all areas of Idlib city and countryside, especially important facilities such as schools and hospitals. However, large numbers of families would be deprived of electricity due to their inability to pay for the bills. The international and local organizations should support the project by sharing the cost of delivering electricity to Syrian people.”

 

A 70-year-old man known as “A.M.” from Armanāz village in the northwest of Idlib shared his point of view with SOHR, as he rejected delivery of regular electricity to his home, explaining that the electricity provided by the solar power is enough for his needs. The man said “I bought, nearly a year ago, an integrated solar panel that is suitable for operating all electric devices including a refrigerator, washing machine, television besides lightening my house. Although the the solar panel cost me a lot of money at the time of purchase, I later saved a lot of money. Now I have electricity for free.”

 

“Despite hailing the concept of providing electricity to Idlib, I still see that the solar power costs save more money and exempts the people from paying any taxes to the ‘Salvation Government’ once imposed in the future,” added the old man.

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