The Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) has directed the ZESCO Board of Directors to suspend employment of new staff and freeze all vacant positions unless in exceptional circumstances.

IDC Chairperson of the Finance Committee David Kombe has directed the Board and management of ZESCO to re-examine the utility company’s strategies, operations and structures, in order to identify and implement measures to turn it around.

Mr. Kombe says the Board needs to take bold and meaningful measures that will transform the company into a viable enterprise.

Speaking during ZESCO’s Annual General Meeting, Mr. Kombe emphasised that ZESCO’s situation requires urgent measures to transform the company.

He further noted that restructuring of the company by streamlining operations and reducing on current workforce includes abolishing or merging of functions or departments; review of all planned adjustments in salaries which should be linked directly to both individual and overall performance of the company.

Mr. Kombe noted that the IDC expects a comprehensive review and restructuring of conditions of service particularly for those in management such as travel on company business, communication, provision of personal to holder vehicles, access to company produces and services and any other such conditions that can be abolished or repackaged.

The IDC representatives who also included the Board Chairperson of the Audit and Risk Committee Isaac Ngoma expressed concern at the pace at which ZESCO is implementing Renewable Energy projects.

He said it is prudent for ZESCO to take the lead in facilitating power generation through renewable energy sources in light of the over 300 Mega Watts power deficit in the country.

And ZESCO Board Chairperson, Mbita Chitala noted that the utility company is faced with various problems including refinancing of its debt owed to Independent Power Producers and settlement of arrears to suppliers.

Dr. Chitala revealed that ZESCO is in the process of raising a 500-million-dollar bond to settle part of the debt.

This is contained in a statement issued to ZNBC news by IDC Public Relations Manager Namakau Mukelabai.

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41 COMMENTS

  1. The company is riddled with corruption and clearly rotten to the core.

    I have a PhD

    Thanks

    BB2014,2016

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    • In company law, the board of directors is the apex body in terms of decision making. This IDC has directors who represent its interests on the board and those are the people through which IDC exerts control of Zesco. It’s wrong and improper for the IDC to issue such a directive. But we aren’t a normal country so I guess it doesn’t matter, has never mattered and never will matter.

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    • Stop beating about the bush. I see no other reason for ZESCO, ZAMTEL, NDOLA LIME, ZSIC, ZAMPOST, ZAMBIA AIRWAYs or whatever you call it today, AND Many other parastatals including you IDC to underperform if not for 1) use of inexperienced corporate individuals who are in effect cadres with there family trees trying to earn a living from these entities. 2) use of parastatals as Government cash cows for irrelevant or sometimes relevant events and flights.
      Antidote:
      a. A wide and careful human capital audit in terms of capacity to perform, qualification and competence in these entities.
      b. Patriotism check, face it, we have alot of unpatriotic and thieving characters in these institutions.
      I hope FIC has noted these PEPs in parastatals. Audit Zesco. What has it done with Eurobond cut…

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    • TIF( Thorn in the Flesh): I only expressed myself on the issue I was competent to comment on. The rest is for those of u who have the evidence. I know that Zesco has fine engineering talent that ensures the lights are on in Zambia for longer periods than in most African countries. Let’s be proud of that alone if nothing else.

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    • @Nemwine
      My comment wasn’t made in reference to yours. It was targeting IDC’s David Kombe, the president’s appointee. He is beating about the bus citing the entity’s continued employing expedition.

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    • Sorry, not my but thorn in the @$%##’s comment. But Kombe seems to recognize that fact ka thorn naiwe.
      He has recommended the following
      – that the Board and management of ZESCO to re-examine the utility company’s strategies, operations and structures, in order to identify and implement measures to turn it around.
      Is that not enough? Surely Zambias power situation is by far much better than other countries. Ba nemwine has correctly observed. For your allegations, take that step. This is what you preach.

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    • These are things that should have been done years ago…these companies ZESCO and ZAMTEL are very inefficient, the only problem is ruling parties in Zambia use them for cash cows: the example of the Transformer deal with Chinks the same company that is building a technical school in Lazy Lungu’s name in Petuake.

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    • ZESCO has no strategy because it is run by Cadres. As a Country, we should get serious by not mixing such institutions with Politics. Let these institutions run independently by professional and educated people.

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    • @Nemwine
      Correction: The Board of Directors may be the apex body in terms of decision making BUT they are answerable to share holders. This IDC directive was not issued in a board meeting but at an AGM and IDC representatives were providing guidance on behalf of shareholders i.e. the Zambian people. Therefore this long over due directive is in order.

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    • ZESCO HAS THE HALLMARKS OF UNIP INSTITUTIONS WHICH WERE MEANT TO SUSTAIN THE PARTY AND IT’S MEMBERS. CONTRACTORS, SUPPLIES AND MAJORITY OF SENIOR EMPLOYEES ARE CADRES. HOW CAN AN ORGANISATION REMAIN COMPETITIVE AND INNOVATIVE IN A DYNAMIC BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT HONESTLY?

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    • @Lincoln
      Sense!
      It’s like hereditary tradition. From UNIP, MMD and now PF. FTJ called these institutions (parastatals) Strategic Entities not because they are national and they save us, rather, because politicians milk from them. Allocate a huge budget to them, then turn around and squeeze the hell out’a them. Double K, FTJ, LPM, RB, MCS, ECL and the next president know what I am talking about.
      There is a wide loophole that needs mending institutionally to stop the nonsense.
      Does Zesco have the capacity to end load shedding? With cadres running the institution, hell no. With loopholes politicians want to exploit, hell no. With family trees and nepotism in every department, hell no.
      Zesco’s behavior is affecting my business. We can’t afford incompetent characters in the…

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    • Energy, Defense, Communication and Agriculture sectors of the economy.
      Otherwise the Nation wallows in stagnation and dysfunct state.

      Strategic companies indeed.

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    • Let’s just face it.We simply don’t have competent managers across the board.We only have eloquent people who are good at talking in bars on TV and other public podiums.This country is in dire need of capabilities and competencies, even foreign nationals must be welcome.

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    • I know cadres who are on these companies payroll and they don’t do nothing …its the same with ZAMTEL, LWSC where you have PF cadres on Boards driving all these Jeeps yet they are non executive board members.

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  2. You mean stop employing cadres and putting cadres on the payroll, most PFoools party cadres are paid by Zesco any way

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    • This started with old man Sata …you made his priority to place useless people on these govt companies boards imagine people like Frank Bwalya on ZESCO board…you will be surprised at who’s who on these boards…there is too much waste…no wonder ZESCO can casually state that they want to increase tariffs to cover their operational costs.

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  3. ZRA employees pay tax why should ZESCO employees get free electricity. Let them also fill the pinch so that they think twice before asking others to bear hiked tarrifs

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  4. A very viable state enterprise that has been ruined by the greed of politicians!! How can they be talking about failing to pay IPPs when they actually revised tariffs in 2016 with a view to encourage IPPs to supply power at economic rates to ensure there are no power shortages? They said increased tariffs would make ZESCO financially sound but here they are;broke,failing to pay IPPs and other suppliers,failing even to import power to meet the deficit! WHERE HAS ALL THE MONEY FROM INCREASED TARIFFS GONE?!

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    • If you examine ZESCO tenders you will see where some of these non technical contracts have gone to…

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  5. Let’s be real. We all know Zesco has been a dumping ground of PF cadres by their leaders. There is soo much dead weight in that organisation. I’d suggest go a step further and do an employee audit in term of qualifications and competencies.

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  6. I thought ZESCO had its Board of Directors who are expected to provide oversight to Management and overall performance. If directives are now coming from IDC, its really difficult to understand because the IDC dont have the insights of how intricate ZESCO is. Already, going by those directives, one can clearly note that they are either driven by emotions or some hidden agenda from IDC Management. IDC missed the point or the mark! What ZESCO needs to undergo now is serious reduction of manpower in areas where it has over employed and not directly aligned to the business of providing electricity to its customers effectively and efficiently. What IDC needed to direct ZESCO about, if at they are serious, is give ZESCO a cap on the number of employees it can have period. As long as these…

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  7. contd
    What ZESCO needs to undergo now is serious reduction of manpower in areas where it has over employed and not directly aligned to the business of providing electricity to its customers effectively and efficiently. What IDC needed to direct ZESCO about, if at they are serious, is give ZESCO a cap on the number of employees it can have period. As long as these directives dont address the human capacity and quantity issue of the already existing workforce, IDC is shooting in the dark.
    For instance, does need all these people in Human Resources and Customer Service?

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  8. ZESCO = P.F CADRE FACTORY, then the same goons wonder why this company has gone down the tubes, & is now the equivalent of a Sewer treatment plant, which lines the pockets of Praise singers and Mposa Mabwe’s?

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  9. I for one think that there is so much nepotism in most Government entities and hence the poor performance of the same. When time to employ is availed, the big bosses swap the list for their close ones. Now this is common even in private companies. I have good examples but for now lets leave it here.

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  10. IDC must implement recommendations from the consultant. The consultant is systematic and independent. The consultant is competent and experienced. The consultant is worried about credentials and reputation to protect. IDC is not a think tank and must not get involved in usurpation of power. IDC can do better to focus on shortlisting the best consultant.

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  11. Measures should include;
    1. Stop writing cheques to the PF secretariat
    2. Stop maintaining two payrolls, the Excel payroll you maintain for PF cadres should be abolished
    3. Employ qualified people and not PF related employees
    4. Reduce tariffs for farmers and manufacturers
    5. Increase tariffs in expensive residential areas

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  12. Characters with no performance track record must not be allowed to run our companies.
    List all of them (CEOs or Directors) from top parastatal companies and tell me if they are worthy serving in those positions.
    Nevertheless all parastatal top jobs are highly political.
    Incompetent lots. How many times has Zesco or Zamtel or Zampost hit the headlines for wrong reasons (underperformance).
    Apparently he (the president) is mute on all of them (characters he appointed).
    Chaps ought to be paying dividends to Government not paying politicians using underhand methods. Taxpayers must not go in for it – recapitalising the nonstarter lossmaking entities.
    This is preposterous. Damn it.

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  13. What do you expect in an organisation whose HR function is managed by a shameless spineless cadre whose focus is foreign travel and being banged in hotels

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  14. This is a lesson for those starting up any sort of business to think ahead of time and plan accordingly. Am sure Zesco never planned that Zambia would grow as it has done and that the need if electricity would rise to exceed the planned capacity at that time hence the lack of foresight to come up with contingency plans to alleviate the current electricity shortage. Zambia is blessed with many water bodies in every area and it would have been easy if those water bodies had been utilised to have as many hydro stations as possible in strategic locations through out zambia. Solar is not enough and cannot enable large enties like mine continue to be in production.

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    • Rowdy: Rubbish. We know Zesco managers and wht they hv been telling govt over the yrs. On transformer which is stolen and sold as edible oil, Zesco has lost millions of kwacha. Zesco carried out a survey in 1998 and found transformer oil being sold in all markets in major urban centres. Is that Zesco’s fault?

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  15. Even GBM at one time supplied Poles to Zesco.
    Tasila supplied transfomers..
    while the other one…Signed a $500m loan with a cabinet in place for approval..
    Chinese were seen driving around town in Zesco company vehicles.

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