HARARE - More than a century after the invention of the light bulb, the majority of Zimbabweans are still living in the dark, a survey has revealed.
According to the survey released on Monday by Afrobarometer, 62 percent of Zimbabwe’s population live in zones served by an electric grid however, the households do not necessarily have lights.
On average, only 12 percent of connected households actually have electricity that works most or all of the time, the research network stated.
Ten percent of connected households have electricity about half the time, while 17 percent of those connected never or occasionally work. Sixty-one percent of the country’s population is a mixture of people living in areas without an electric grid or who live in areas with an electric grid which is undermined by erratic supply and poor service.
“Afrobarometer documented the reach and quality of electrical connections through nearly 54 000 interviews in 36 African countries in 2014/2015 as well as direct observations in thousands of communities across the continent,” the survey said in a statement.
“While North African countries and Mauritius are able to provide reliable electricity for most or all of their citizens, they are the exception, particularly when it comes to serving rural and poor populations.
“In some countries, the electric grid reaches only a fraction of the population; in others, an extensive grid is undermined by inadequate supply and poor service.
“Access to electricity is fundamental to opportunity in this age. It‘s the light that children study by.”
The research network conducts public attitude surveys on democracy, governance, economic conditions, and related issues across more than 30 countries in Africa.
“Afrobarometer conducts face-to-face interviews in the language of the respondent’s choice with nationally representative samples that yield country-level results with margins of error of +/-2 percent (for samples of 2,400) or +/3 percent (for samples of 1,200) at a 95 percent confidence level,” the research concluded.