Zambian Government pays Eskom US$ 40 million for power imports-Siliya


Chief Government Spokesperson Dora Siliya says Government has paid 40 million Dollars for electricity importation from South Africa.

Ms Siliya says 10 million Dollars was paid last week and a 30 million Dollars was transferred to Eskom on Wednesday this week.

She disclosed this during the Hot FM Hot seat programme on Thursday.

Ms Siliya who is also Minister of Information and Broadcasting Services however has not indicated when the power imports will start flowing into Zambia.

Energy Minister Matthew Nkhuwa announced on 23rd October, 2019 that the power imports will be in after 14 days.

Zambia has a power deficit of 700 megawatts which has resulted in 15 hour power load shedding management.

And Ms. Siliya has revealed that government will give its position on the issue of the Lower Zambezi mining licence soon.

She says Government will soon give its position on the matter regarding the issuance of a mining licence in the lower Zambezi.

Ms. Siliya says once internal consultations within Government are concluded, the Minister of Mines and Mineral Development will give the nation an update on the matter.

Ms. Siliya said Government wants to establish and understand the bone of contention and other processes that were undertaken prior to the issuance of the licence before a final decision is made.

She says the matter is receiving active attention and that Government has heard the cries of the citizens whose interests will always be top priority.

Ms. Siliya said Government has keenly been following the debate and has taken note of the many concerns citizens and other stakeholders have raised on the matter.


Information and Broadcasting Minister Dora Siliya speaking to Hot FM’s Zach Chavula on the Hot Seat radio programme
Information and Broadcasting Minister Dora Siliya speaking to Hot FM’s Zach Chavula on the Hot Seat radio programme


  1. And how much of that is for settling old debts and when are you paying Maamba for the power they sold to ZESCO or is some one waiting for a cut before releasing payment.Tell us also how GRZ and ZESCO have been using our money after raising tariffs by 75% when you promised us there would be no more loadshedding!!

    • 100% correct. People tend to forget so easilly. They justified the 75% increment saying it was very necessary to stop the then load shedding. So after increasing the tariff load shedding starts again. So if you want to continue load shedding than drop the tarrifs back by 75% or import power and stop this load shedding. The money you have paid to Eskom is our 75% which you have been charging customers but not providing the service.

    • Just one kiss and the dollar is gone. Just like that. Whether politically or economically no one really knows.

      Insala nidiminwa, tempulilwa
      So Maamba Coaleries produces 300megawatts. Four of this kind of investment in Zambia would produce 1200megawatts. It is sad that CEC can only afford 1megawatt. The Ministry of Energy has failed and failed lamentably.
      I guess this move is done in a while we wait for the rains. Also that farmers should wait for the rains. Isn’t climate change a reality? We should be proactive in using science and technology. Stick to the worste case scenario as we plan. Yes I remember ECL’s Government promised that loadshedding would end.

    • Even here we are able to see that ESKOM has no capacity to export electricity in next 2 months before rain season.
      $40 million donation to South Africa shows how much thinking deficit is in the PF government.

    • This is Stupidity, How can you pay $40M to another country? Do our leaders really Think? Making another Country Rich. Why dint we use this Money to Invent in Alternative Energy? PF Leadership is so FOOLISH.

  2. My questions are very simple.
    1.Why not pay Mamba Coal power plant their money and invest in our local energy
    2. Our ministers do they ever have priorities in their lives?
    3. Why don’t we Zambians ever ask our leaders to account for their hard earned stolen wealth?
    4. Is PF the only party able to uplift poor peoples lives?
    Truth be told MMD was a better party than these thieves who had nothing, now the flaunt with stolen bling…

    • i think this is a blue lie they haven’t paid anyone for electricity if they did electricity would have started flowing. and i don’t understand why government is stressing itself importing power using the little money they have. they could have just asked private investors to import after negotiating with big business houses like the mines to pay a little more for the imported power. then the little ZESCO power has would be distributed to house holds and other industries. this model makes everyone win, ZESCO gets willing charges, government gets taxes and on top of that they gain political capital for resolving the load shedding problem

    • My friend the current power problems are directly due to failure by MMD to invest in the sector. PF is doing something to up power generation in the country.

  3. If government paid for power then we would have it already, I think this is just lip service from PF, they are only buying time. The power crisis will only get worse.

  4. I hope and pray that the powers that be have learnt a lesson,be it the hard way, in diversifying our sources of electricity generation and not relying almost entirely on hydro.
    The negative economic implications as a result of this electricity load-shedding are very visible to all of us. Action for the long term is now and no amount of lip service will lift us from this predicament. Enough is enough!

    • While at it remember that the energy deficit that led to loadshedding hit us first in the LPM period within 2006 to 2008. So the energy policies and strategies for RBB, MCS and now ECL have seriously failed. Realistically, we should have sorted out this problem 10 years ago.
      You import fuel and now electricity.
      Seriously, with well baked Engineers and Technologists coupled with proactive Governments in a country, you would not be losing dollars in this manner.
      Insala nindiminwa, tempulilwa.


  6. Another lie , its hard to believe what comes out of these peoples mouths. Only blind cadres will believe whatever they say.

  7. I agree with Manyozo! Have we paid Mamba in all fairness before we transfer that huge amount to Eskom?
    Mamba can offset some of these load-sheddings we are experiencing if supported nicely.
    But why are we in such a disastrous situation.

  8. HON MINISTER KEY ISSUE IS EXPIRY OF AUTHORIZATION DOCUMENT: Regulation 30 of EIA Regulations, SI 28 of 1997 states as follows: “If, following the preparation of a project brief or environmental impact assessment, an authorisation licence, permit or permission has been issued but no land preparation or construction work has started within three years, then the developer must re-register with the authorising agency any intention to develop.” Five years have since lapsed. No construction work had started by last week. So the authorization document has expired. Your Cabinet should simply not issue another one. It is as simple as that!

  9. Hon Minister, on power import, your Cabinet has done a commendable job to cover the critical deficit. We however have a problem with ESCOM. By its own admission, the company is in a “death spiral.” It had a $30 billion debt at the end of March this year, and its solvency is at risk. Meanwhile, it is the leading SoE on the graft profile.The budget announced in February included a $4.6 billion cash injection over the next three years to help Eskom service its debt and free up money for operations. This has not happened, and the total collapse of the institution is on the horizon. Are you sure the $40 million will not go down the drain? And by the way, where did you get the $40 million? Foreign Reserves? You need to be clear on such issues to avoid conjectures and speculation!

    • Quadruple sense of the hight order.
      Yangu ba Dora.
      This move is extremely dangerous.

      Buying power from a country that is buying from Mozambique. It’s like buying from Mozambique through an equally power hit South Africa. Now, consider the cost.

  10. Electric power import cost must be channeled to alternative energies without further delay. The Government technocrats must anticipate and foresee power deficits. Failure to do so, then these Government technocrats must be backed by expatriates with capacity to deliver on reliable electric power. It is shortsighted to place local specialists that do not have the requisite competencies and creativity. The cost of load shedding for business, industry and households is too much for the country to be indifferent. Time for action is now.

  11. Our reserve money gone just like that? It’s amazing that Zambians are not asking where these chaps have found this money at short notice. Maamba power should also issue a demand notice to enable them service their machines so that at the end of the 3 months of ESCOM power, we are back on full Maamba power! Local contractors, retirees and civil servants arrears should also be settled at the same speed! Agony is paying the $40 Million only to be told that was the debt money. Now pay upfront for new power export! Can the Minister of Finance tell the nation how much our country has lost due to load shedding so that our Energy Ministry and ZESCO get to appreciate the cost of incompetence and lack of forward planning (Lack of Vision).

  12. When is the imported power starting and how many watts has been contracted,does it mean there will be no load shedding

  13. I work for ESKOM at Mega Park Head Office in Johannesburg.
    I inquired with my workmates at Eskom HQ with regards to Zambia power import payment.
    The truth of the matter is no payment has taken place so far but Zesco has promised to wire R10 Million in 2 weeks time and balance split in 6 months period.
    Dora is a minister of ‘misinformation’

  14. @Thorn in the flesh
    Are you the real “Thorn” or an imposter? Thorn, I am worried because you appear to have seen sense on this matter please clarify before the real TIF appears and before I put a tick against your postings here? Kikikiki!

  15. Dora you have paid $40m and no power to date? Why didn’t you instead pay Maamba Collieries so that they repair the second generator and restore 150kilomegawatts almost immediately? Why are you failing to pay a local company since 2017 but you have a whopping $40m to pay Eskom a foreign company?

  16. Now we have the truth. Trust Abbort Mumbwe. Mega Watt Park would know. There is hardly any electricity to spare from here. It will be back to black outs once the World Rugby Cup is over.

  17. Importing power at that cost and for how long in terms of months does the money cater? Tell us what the benefits will be by taking this course of action? Last I heard all this was to simply reduce load shedding by 2 hours, are there no other pressing issues this money could have been channeled to. I was hoping that government would look to invest in something that yields long term benefits in electricity generation. Has someone assessed what impact this decision will have on the economy to make it worth taking? What other benefits that could be realised from this money are we giving up so that this course of action can be taken?

  18. Zesco had nkongole kuli ba ESKOM.the issue of importing power is not true.they have paid the nkongole.and they have nkongole Ku copper belt power will be cutting for 8hours.

  19. Zesco had nkongole kuli ba ESKOM.the issue of importing power is not true.they have paid the nkongole.and they have nkongole Ku copper belt power will be cutting for 8hours.

  20. B Zambai please note the price you are paying for importing electricity. When you have surplus do not charge less than what you are paying for. Sometime ago there was an article on Business times in SA that Zambia was almost getting nothing for its electricity. Is it the issue of human capacity or what?? Any way if we have borrowed we must pay back. if there is anyone who owes us they must pay back.

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