State power utility ZESCO has announced that it has extended load shedding hours for more than eight hours due to what it says low water levels.
Most parts of Lusaka on Wednesday experienced intense loadshedding which lasted for more than eight hours.
In a short statement, ZESCO Senior Manager Marketing and Public Relations Bessie Banda said the firm has been forced to resume more load shedding due to reduction generation at Kafue Gorge Power Station from an average of 700MW to 600MW because of low water levels.
Ms. Banda said the current extended load shedding being experienced in some parts of the country has also been necessitated by works involving the upgrade of the 220kV line to 330kV between Muzuma and Kafue in readiness for the total evacuation of power from Maamba Collieries power station.
She further said the loss of 48MW generation from Ndola Energy Company Limited has also affected supply.
“ZESCO is committed to providing reliable electricity and is doing everything possible to ensure all transmission and generation constraints are mitigated in the shortest possible time. In particular, the line upgrade works will be completed by 11th November 2016, which will strengthen the capacity to evacuate power from Maamba,” Ms. Banda said.
“We expect the extended load shedding to end by 12 November 2016. In view of the foregoing, ZESCO therefore wishes to appeal to its customers to use electricity efficiently and to use alternative sources of energy where possible. The inconvenience caused is deeply regretted.”
But sources at the Ministry of Energy have revealed that government does not have any money to continue with the power imports from Mozambique.
Zambia last year spent over US$40 million to import 148 MW of emergency power between September and December 2015 from Aggreko Mozambique, a subsidiary of Aggreko Plc.