ZESCO Limited officials inspect the waters at Lake Kariba where the utility firm generates power
ZESCO Limited officials inspect the waters at Lake Kariba where the utility firm generates power

GOVERNMENT has charged that more investment needs to be channelled into non-hydro power generation in light of the shortage in hydropower supply due to receding water levels.

Chief Government spokesperson Chishimba Kambwili said the Government is alive to the fact that the country can no longer rely on hydropower and is focused on investing in non-hydro electricity.

“In this vein, Government agrees with stakeholders calling for more investment in thermal power generation so that citizens as well as industries have a fall-back whenever there is a deficit in power generation,” he said.

Zesco has been compelled to reduce power generation at its major power station following the poor rainfall experienced during the 2014/2015 rainy season and has embarked on loadshedding to manage the electricity that is available.

Government regrets this scenario but believes long term solutions that involve more investment in other power generation ventures other than hydropower generation, would help the country and its citizens.

Mr Kambwili who is also Information and Broadcasting Services minister added that while Government appreciates the current challenges being faced in power generation, it feels sentiments like those coming from the Zambia Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) general secretary Cosmas Mukuka are unfortunate and unhelpful as they do not provide the solutions being sought.

“What Mr Mukuka and the technocrats in the energy sector should be debating now, are alternative and viable solutions to the shortage of hydro-electricity in the event of low rainfall as the case is now,” he said.

The minister said Government encourages all citizens to come up with suggestions to ending the power crisis in both the short and long term.

“It is also significant to note that Zambia is not the only country in the sub-region facing power shortages. South Africa and other neighbouring countries are equally faced with the same problem.”

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37 COMMENTS

  1. Diversify! Solar farms, wind farms, coal plants. Zambia could quickly be exporting power to our neighbors. Solar and wind can be great day time sources of power. Coal would supplement night time and hydro.

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    • We have always said PF govt and Edgar Lungu in particular have no plan for Zambia. The current power deficit lies squarely on PF. In the 4 years they have been a in power at least two thermal power plants would have been built, but they decided to buy Landcruizers with the money they borrow.

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    • Where will they get the money from to invest in the alternative energy sources. Am sure you have heard Pf have run the country broke and are proposing to choke the mines (the main source of revenue) by reducing power supp
      supply.

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    • More and more admissions that PF is bunch of f00ls will made public in the run upto 2016 general elections.

      Chikwanda was the first one to admit that PFstole all the money borrowed for infrastructural projects and that there is no penny left. So Zambian should in the mean just continue to shout and vote “infintu ni lungu in the hope that money will fall from heaven.

      Now Kambwili has also just admitted that PF ni ba chimbwi no plan by calling upon the public to make suggestions on how tackle load shedding when PF has professionals employed in various energy sectors of economy who know what to. The problem still remains , there is no money even if people make suggestions.

      Some of us have made suggestions to save money by reducing the cabinet for a start.

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    • Like the Greek government, the government should hold a referendum on loadshedding. ?????????

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  2. Reduced water levels this is crap go and tell that to nursery school children.Zesco management have just failed to manage the utility company

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    • But thats the main reason as to why they are facing the problem. If you want to say its lack of proper management then give a proper reason. They could have built alternative solutions for situations like these though

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    • ati wind farms??? leave those things to us electrical engineers. do you what the average wind speeds are in zambia? Wind energy is not sustainable in zambia.
      Landeniko solar energy twalaumfwako. solution is nuclear energy which can be built and well facilitated in the namib desert as a joint venture amongst the sadc member countries.
      Twalinwa nuclear power, lekeni twisa tukuleko ka plant apo kaili. fi uranium ni mbwe!!!!

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  3. The solutions are well known and have been ignored. With the abundance of sunshine through out the year, it is not rocket science.

    I despise excuses especially by a government and giving examples of neighbouring nations. It is the job of opposition groups political or otherwise to shame the government by bringing out such ills. It does not augur well for a minister to blame the opposition!

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  4. Suggestions are that stop useless bye elections,reduce the number of deputy ministers,permanent secretaies and presidential tours then invest these monies in solar energy.which your always opposing

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  5. Kill Zesco monopoly that it becomes profitable for private companies that want to invest in energy generation. At the moment Zesco is charging relative uneconomical tariffs which would undermine private investment.

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  6. hunger knows no boundary. you can continue singing PF! PF! PF! but your relatives even those who voted had no breakfast, they don’t know what they will eat at lunch.

    Come on guys don’t hate someone because of tribe, you not eat tribe, you will not dress tribe, you will not work tribe. the truth is plain the economy is moved from prospect to worst under PF. And you are not ashamed of even saying ifintu ni lungu. The debts are souring high beyond redemption. when this country plungs into abject poverty it will not spare you. You are busy bloging rubbish instead of analyzing issues. PF has no direction and it is fast leading this country into degradation and spoils.

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    • You want PF to buy you breakfast? Some of us work hard on farms and we are able to have our SAMPO BREAKFAST EVERY DAY

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  7. The solution lies in liberating the power sector so that other players are allowed to participate .Zesco is too politicised . The MD does not have to attend interviews but appointed .

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  8. Zesco needs to be split into three companies namely; power generation, power transmission and lastly power supply and involve private sector participation into this. Actually I would suggest that zesco changes to Zambia energy generation company and live the transmission and supply to private sector. You will see that a lot of load ie capital wise will be reduced and also retain your inspectorate through ERB.

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  9. Chishimba last time I checked you told the nation that since PF got into power loadsheding had become a thing of the past.You are now trying to ask for solutions from who don’t even have degrees like your copper stone one.You are pathetic. But anyway why not remove all taxes for solar power implements you hippo and your and your pathetic fools.Meanwhile you have continued to subsidise foreign owned mining companies on their power bills leaving us the owners of the country to foot their bills and have gone further to a gee ring to their dictate on how much tax they should pay.Just relinquish power you have failed.

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  10. First of all let zesco managment stop giving out millions of illegal tender purchases to related individuals for procuments and purchase these goods and services directly.This huge amount been saved will eliminate most of the problems zesco is facing.Let the security wings investigate what is heppening and which individuals have beneffitted from free monies.

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  11. You were elected because you claimed to have what it takes to analyse, formulate and implement economic development policies on behalf of citizens. So if you come back to citizens to seek their suggestions, are you going to hold public meetings or put suggestions-boxes all-round the country? Failures indeed!

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    • Kambwili’s statement is an admission of failure. In other words the current GRZ is totally clueless regarding alternative sources of electricity. With tails between their legs they are now begging citizens to come up with solutions. What a useless bunch! Reduce the number of cabinet ministers and deputies and invest the saved money in power generation. Stop borrowing for the purpose of buying luxury items like cars. In countries like India ministers drive ordinary cars and yet India is doing far much better than Zambia in almost all spheres. The problem with Zambia is that the GRZ is shamelessly trying very hard to live beyond its means on borrowed funds. Typical of retrogrades!

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    • The Greek government has taken the decision whether or not to stay in the Eurozone to the people. They will decide as a nation this coming Sunday. There is nothing wrong with consulting people. Zambian Managers have failed because of looking down on subordinates even if they have solutions to the problems facing the company.

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  12. So now Mr. Kambwili claims this Government is “alive to the fact that the country can no longer rely on hydro-power and is focused on investing in non-hydro electricity.”

    Really?

    Why then hasn’t Government done anything about this in the past four years and are only now speaking about the issue when we are in crisis?

    Hello – you’re calling for suggestions…now!?!? Where’s the plan?

    Next, I am sure Mr. Chikwanda will say he is revising GDP growth down because of load-shedding when only two weeks ago he was saying it is “just OK” to borrow more because the GDP to debt ratio is sustainable. Does this sound like a government that is “alive” to the issue? Please.

    Besides, what has South Africa got to do with Zambia’s energy supply? Just more excuses!

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    • South Africa has everything to do with Zambia’s energy supply because Kambwili and his GRZ colleagues believe that South Africa is our big brother. Since there is load shedding in South Africa Zambia should experience the same. Next will be immitating having little Nkandlas all over Lusaka. Hopefully they will end at tribalism and not copy xenophobia.

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  13. ZESCO has serious short comings – inefficiency, corruption & bureaucracy is killing professionalism-besides making it very costly to operate.

    PF must commission a commission of inquiry into the operations of ZESCO & recommend ways to make it more businesslike – we need to dismantle zesco into 3 separate entities – generation, distribution and metering:

    Also get rid of political interference

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  14. @13.1 kashiji
    The Greek government has taken the decision whether or not to stay in the Eurozone to the people. They will decide as a nation this coming Sunday. There is nothing wrong with consulting people. Zambian Managers have failed because of looking down on subordinates even if they have solutions to the problems facing the company. Why even complain if don’t welcome Kambwili’s invitation.

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  15. At the moment we don’t need so many suggestions and ideas sir. what everybody knows on the platform is power can be generated from Wind, Water, Solar, thermal, bar Gas and Uranium mention it …. endless. Did you know that Zambia Sugar can export power to the entire Mazabuka district and this can make Zeco save on heavy load? Imwe bombeni not ukulala. Our president is in a hurry to develop Zambia not debates. Maamba Coal mine can also supply within that district. Imwe sure do we need the whole country to give ideas. Bakateka ba E.C.L balefwaya proactive team members capwa.

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  16. I would like to add my voice to the debate that is going on concerning load shedding and the call by the Govt for concerned citizens to come up with suggestions.

    The problem of load shedding is not entirely up to PF, but rather to all govts which have ruled this country since independence.

    We seem to have leaders who lack 4sight. You should not wait for a problem before you start looking for a solution. In medical circles, they say prevention is better than cure.

    The problem is with us now, so complaining and pointing fingers at each other wont help any body. The question we have to answer now is WHAT DO WE DO?

    In my opinion, we have to look at the short term and long term solutions separately. we should also look at household use and industrial use separately.

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  17. too late, people gonna vote them out, enough is enough of suffering, by the way , asking citizen or zambian living in Diaspora to invest back into mother zambia, with no tax , in energy sector. exempt vat from utility bill today , make all citizen happy today, cry from Chinese goverment, over how to improve power generation,stop living in luxury with cars ,houses ,learn from Indian officials, you brought Zed backward,same as you are (zed officials) no more driving new cars today ,no matter who you are ! then consult from Chinese and Japanese ,Russian over Nuclear technologies over power transformation,in that way ,thats how you wanted power no longer depend on hydropower.

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  18. Let ZESCO import gensets with custom duty and VAT removed. It should only add a handling charge. ZB pays a handling charge of 3 kwacha per crate regardless of the cost of the brand of beer

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  19. Interesting development but also welcome at the same time. Citizens must take this invitation and give their suggestions. Some of us, on a small scale, have already de-coupled from the grid by investing in solar systems; expensive at first but liberating nonetheless going forward. I would suggest we take up solar energy and ask government to subsidize these like RB tried when he was trying to win a vote. This time, for real. It is time to get independent of this state monopoly in a few ways.

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  20. No brainer !
    we need to take a leaf from Rwanda solar village concept, we need to take a leaf from Serra Leon Sugar cane bagasse concept, we need to take a leaf from Mauritius ethanol concept and many more. we have a lot of water, cassava, and can grow much more sugar cane red sorghum and cassava to generate electricity but we need RADICAL AND PRAGMATIC CHANGES AT POLICY LEVEL ON ENERGY. renewable ENERGY IS POTENTIALLY A MITIGANT

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  21. Can we have a real ministry of energy in this country. Sorry to say we don’t have one right now.

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  22. Sometime it does not hurt yo learn from our friends. What our neighbour Malawi did through directive from the President was to draw up an investment opportunity compendium within 3 month which included investment opportunities in the energy sector. They later hosted “Malawi Investment Forum” which just ended yesterday were investors from 60 countries participated and the energy sector received overwhelming pledges for investment Making Malawi well cover on the energy sector if all the pledges materialise…..

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Comments are closed.