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Alba Iulia
Tuesday, August 16, 2022

Zesco’s ‘rescue plan’ as Zambians brace for worsening load shedding

Economy Zesco's 'rescue plan' as Zambians brace for worsening load shedding

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

ZESCO has further reduced electricity generation at Kariba north bank power station to 300 Mega Watts (MW),blaming this on it’s customers who they say consume too much electricity after load shedding hours.

The country now only has 1,158 Giga Watt hours (GWh) of electricity accessible for generation at Kariba from the 4,996 GWh which was available for the period June 1, to December this year.

Zesco senior manager for marketing and public relations Bessie Banda said at a media briefing in Lusaka yesterday that the Kariba power station could be shut prematurely due to the impending lack of water for electricity generation.Zesco previously generated 800 MW from Kariba before the figure trickled down to 560 MW after the Zambezi River Authority (ZRA) rationed water supplied for generation owing to poor rainfall.Ms Banda said the current pattern of consumption after the 8-hour daily load shedding programme was not helping the rationing exercise which is intended at conserving water for electricity generation in the months ahead.She said the trend of consumers maximising the usage of electricity while the commodity was available could lead to Zesco prematurely shutting Kariba power station as early as next month.

The Plan

  1. To urge Consumers to stop maximising usage of electricity
    Zesco is appealing to it’s esteemed customers to continue to conserve and use electricity energy responsibly when power supply is restored to avoid shutting down the power station prematurely next month.
  2. Buy solar panels, etc ..just in case
    Government has fast tracked the process of finding alternative sources of energy to replace hydro-electricity.Mines, Energy and Water Development Permanent Secretary Emelda Chola said a number of companies had been identified to supply alternative sources of energy in case the country’s existing stock from hydro deleted completely.
  3. Import emergency power for the mines
    ZESCO will import an additional 140 MW as emergency power from an independent gas producing firm based in Mozambique.ZESCO senior manager for system operations and trading Changala Nswana said the bulk of the consignment would be targeted at servicing the mines.This brings electricity imports from Mozambique to more than 400 MW after Zesco earlier contracted 300 MW from Electricidade de Mozambique (EDM).
  4. 60MW expected from Itezhi-tezhi in December
    ZESCO has made headway on medium and long term projects to improve distribution with the 120 MW Itezhi-tezhi hydro power project which is 87 percent complete.The first 60 MW of the project will be commissioned in December this year while the other 60 MW would be commissioned in January, 2016.
  5. 300MW from Maamba Collieries next year
    The 300 MW coal fired power plant by Maamba Collieries will be commissioned in two phases in the first quarter of next year.
  6. Install 300MW solar plants
    Zesco would install 300 MW of power in distributed solar plants starting next year
  7. Buy 2million fluoresent lamps
    Two million compact fluorescent lamps have been procured for distribution countrywide.


  1. Reading Between the Power Lines

    1. Zesco will prematurely shut down and you the power consuming customer only have yourself to blame for our failings

    2. Buy solar panels there is no just in case and it is actually or else…

    3. Import emergency energy for people whose energy we should not be subsidising and we will cower if they threaten to close the mines and offer them free electricity if we have to.

    4 – 6. – That’s all futuristic and it may or may not happen on time but at least I planned, right?

    7. Oh yes. Procurement means pocket money for me and my buddies so two million to distribute nationwide with extra for regions who have never been supplied by Zesco anyway.

    • I couldn’t have said it better myself…But to further summarize…we are screwed!!

      The power coming from itezhi tezhi is so little 60MW? Shouldn’t we be planning to generate more than the 800MW we initially had? WE need more than 300MW in solar please and who is the lucky bastard who got the tender to supply 2million fluorecent lamps? I hope ZESCO has a way to dispose these lamps that are filled with mercury.Is the PR person educating Zambians on the dangers of not disposing the tubes properly?

    • well said — its our fault for using electricity. So, go out and buy solar panels and hope for the best. Awesome!There is leadership at its best!

    • One thing ZESCO and Gov’t is also overlooking about solar power for domestic households is that 6 panels on a roof in an urban area is able to produce more with excess left which can be pumped back into the national grid…what incentive is there for domestic households, these are policies that the gov’t should be tabling.

  2. The big lesson to Zambians however is that we are not developing building roads. The PF is cheating people that road construction is development, and together with their cadres have managed to win accolades from unsuspecting and mostly illiterate Zambians. We hear them say ‘we are seeing the good roads that Govt is doing. If that is not development then what is it? Ifwe ni Lungu fye come 2016’. And a lot of such other nonsense! What development? Hospitals have become death zones; the Government is totally bankrupt as a result of overspending on roads. The entire economic system is now rundown – the exchange rate has sky-rocketed to K8.85 to $1 from K4.78 in 2011, prices of goods are increasing all over the place, Government workers have not had a salary adjustment since January, 2013…

  3. It is only a few months ago that ZESCO was exporting power to Neibouring countries.You wonder why they did not have the foresight to conserve water resources at that time.Now they want to pass on the blame to local customers.What nonsense is this?….

  4. ZRA has rationed water for power generation … great! What is stopping ZESCO from putting in place a water recycling system as a short term measure? Or am i too dumb as a lay man?

  5. All I’m reading is procuring, installing, etc spending of taxpayers funds due to not having long term plans…where are the policy directives to promote alternative energy…ZESCO are stretched and are unable to GENERATE, DISTRIBUTE, RETAIL energy in Zambia. When is this govt of Lazy Lungu going to bite the bullet and increase energy tariffs and also liberate the energy market hence attract commercial solar investors like Google is doing in Kimberley, in SA’s Northern Cape with their 96MW Jasper Solar Energy Project. When the likes of Richard Branson came to Zambia about 6 months ago all Zambians wanted to talk about was the silly idea of creating a pointless National Airline or ZRL, he avoided the transport sector as he knew there is no money there and alluded to solar power.
    If we…

    • Cont’d
      If we play our cards right Zambia could become one of the biggest exporters energy in 2 years time but we need visionary focused leadership NOT corrupt lazy bums who only see as far as the next election.
      Zambians wake up from your docility!!

  6. Ati “rescue plan” ????

    We need to be rescued from these dull cadres that put us in this situation in the first place!


    They have been pulling salaries and attending workshops and conferences at Taxpayers expense for how long, and only now when the power system has COLLAPSED they come up with a “rescue plan”??

    Did all the water in Kariba leak out overnight?

    Their job was to see this coming YEARS AHEAD, not when it is already too late. Not only must these incompetents be fired, they must be prosecuted for neglect of duty and economic SABOTAGE>

    • That is why PF is known as CNP!

      This is not a rescue plan, this is just proving PF has NO PLAN! For Zesco, or for the Kwacha, or even for Zambia.

      Just a bunch of criminals and conmen masquerading as politicians, while they are BORROWING BILLIONS so they can steal it before they get kicked out of Government.

    • To imagine the entie Zesco management flew to Switzerland for a strategic planning session for one week sometime in March this year!

  7. Buy 2million fluoresent lamps
    Two million compact fluorescent lamps have been procured for distribution countrywide.

    Go to markets e.g. Chisokone market, you will find thousands of ordinary (high energy consuming) bulbs lighting through out the night. These are the marketeers who do not care whether Zambia has enough power or not.

  8. Zesco stop blaming poor rain fall, we all know Vic falls is of normal capacity for this time of the yr and caborabasa hydro power down station is producing at normal capacity.
    We are not illitrate.

  9. Funny enough, just a few weeks ago, Zambezi River Authority was seriously castigated by some government minister for saying the country could be plunged into total darkness by November!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  10. So Zescos plan is that we must just stop using electricity, and in 90 days they will have fixed everything!

    Where did PF find these IDI0TS???

    We have heard that song before!

  11. People listen: You were warned a few months ago that the dam walls need urgent repairs or else it will collapse. Even the load on the road that goes over the wall were supposed to be stringently monitored. Where did this horrible story of rainfall come from? It was meant to pass the buck to God for sending poor rainfall instead of admitting to DECADES of incompetence and negligence by the leaders you run to rallies for. What is wrong with all of you!? Get up off your backsides and get yourselves solar panels right now! I already have a solar geyser, emergency solar lighting for my TV and at least six of my seven rooms so there! Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

  12. Zesco the worst utility company on the plane t and ati we blame the consumers for the power deficit. This is foolishness of the highest order and if Zesco management cannot do their job let them just resign for Zambia has many qualified engineers that can do a better job at Zesco.PF is just the nightmare government and Zambians are having many sleepless nights all because of the PF’S failure to deal with the energy crisis/Let alone, President Lungu,the self acclaimed, President with no vision is so quiet for he has no idea since he is just a sangwapo President.Dont Vote for PF councillors and MP’s and more don’t vote for President Edgar Chagwa Lungu and his comedian PF friends for are they wilfully dismantling the economy and don’t care about the ordinary Zambians that voted for them…

  13. Let us be realistic my fellow welmeanig country men and women. If we get into the culture of sacking people each time they set a foot wrong, then none of us would be working. Even our spouses would have relieved us.

    Let us give ourselves time to correct the wrong.

  14. Take a 5 lt plastic container
    paint it in black color
    put outside under the sun for a couple of hours
    You will have 40-50 degrees hot water to prepare your meal
    You might save 5 minutes of use of stove
    You will save money and electricity
    and more free time for your wife / mother / etc. !

  15. I love Zambia and can help with domestic electricity supply during load shedding hours . If you are interested leave me a mail and we can talk.

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