The ambitious plan to light up 25 million households in a decade by the Ethiopian Electric Utility (EEU) is undermined as it managed to garner 353,000 new customers in the ended fiscal year. As Ethiopia ranks in the bottom three countries in terms of electricity access from the continent with 56 million people in the dark, managing to deliver services to a mere 4.4 million households puts an undesirable light. EEU met 67pc of its expansion target this year, with CEO Shiferaw Telila chalking it up to the undue strain on its resources by rehabilitation endeavours in war-stricken areas. Rehabilitation of infrastructure in Afar, Tigray and Amhara regional states piled up 1.2 billion in costs, according to the CEO. While reaching 125 new cities in the year the Company disclosed a pervasive theft problem that led it to a 42.4 million Br loss. Addis Abeba accounted for a 6.3 million Br loss whereas 66 million Br in damages was sustained by the company's infrastructure across the country. Shieraw expressed that the extensive harm caused by the perpetrators is far from underwhelming as he presented the annual report of the company at its headquarters last week. He said 44 individuals were sentenced to up to nine years for the destruction of public property. EEU earned 34.5 billion Br in the year through its services selling power and extending lines. Shiferaw indicated that the company had incurred costs of 14 billion Br for the purchase of power from Ethiopian Electric Power (EEP).