Thursday, May 30, 2024

ZESCO’s decision to award Poles Contracts Foreign Suppliers gets backing

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Opposition People’s Alliance for Change (PAC) Leader Andyford Banda has backed state power utility ZESCO’s decision to award contracts for the supply of wooden electrical poles to foreign companies.

Despite public outcry, Energy Minister Peter Kapala says ZESCO Limited will go ahead with plans to import electrical poles saying it is more prudent to procure the poles at factory costs from abroad.

Commenting on this development, Mr Banda says there is nothing wrong with ZESCO Limited importing the electrical wooden poles as long as it will cut the costs and enable the institution to save money.

Meanwhile, Former Zaffico Managing Director Fighton Sichone has attributed ZESCO’s decision to the inability by the local market to satisfy the power utility`s growing demand and a lack of private sector players in wood farming.

Mr. Sichone who has challenged stakeholders complaining about this decision to show where local suppliers are beyond the existing contract between ZESCO Limited and ZAFFICO saying there is nothing wrong with the power utility importing wood poles as local supply is failing to meet the ever increasing demand for electricity connections.

He argues that ZESCO’s listing of foreign suppliers dominated by South Africans and Zimbabweans to supply wooden poles for electricity transmission is testament of the lag by the local market dominated by ZAFFFICO to satisfy demand that has also seen the arrival of new players like the rural electrification authority-rea demand among others.

ZESCO Limited has clarified that by December 31, 2021, the power utility had in excess of 67000 pending new connections due to lack of material including a lack of treated wooden poles with the power utility needing over 40,000 of these of which local suppliers can only satisfy about 1.4 percent of requirements.

However, the Timber Producers Association of Zambia has called for the cancellation of the tender for the supply and delivery of wooden poles to Zesco by foreign companies.

Zesco has shortlisted 10 foreign companies for the supply and delivery of 9 and 12 meter wooden poles.
Charles Masange, the Association President said the awarding of a tender to foreign companies amounts to exporting of jobs.

Mr. Masange said Zambia is not short of companies who are capable of supplying Timber to Zesco and has wondered why only foreign companies have been shortlisted.

13 COMMENTS

  1. You are supporting nonsense. Here is where HH should show us his local business development agenda if he has any. Zesco is denying growth to local entrepreneurs yet it is a state owned firm. Then tomorrow you condemn pick n pay for importing South African produce?

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  2. “……Mr. Masange said Zambia is not short of companies who are capable of supplying Timber to Zesco and has wondered why only foreign companies have been shortlisted…”

    Which part of cutting out middlemen to reduce costs don’t these people understand ?????

    Produce the poles in zambia ZESCO will buy from you………..

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  3. That is why the cost of doing business in zambia is too high………….

    Too many middlemen, adding nothing but cost to the product………..

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  4. Atleast under pf some contracts went to cadres who were actually Zambian. Under upnd they will go to your imperialists.

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  5. So all this time there is no one to supply even a mere pole to Zesco? and yet you had a bunch of cadres boosting of owning companies on paper.

  6. Step aside look how f00Iish you look Hahaha your bally has failed. He doesn’t trust you who voted for him. He would rather entrust the country resources to whlte people who funded his elections than you who voted based on tribe.

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  7. Meanwhile, Former Zaffico Managing Director Fighton Sichone has attributed ZESCO’s decision to the inability by the local market to satisfy the power utility`s growing demand and a lack of private sector players in wood farming.

  8. Those 60,000 outstanding connections shouldn’t think they have won the war. Even if they get their connection fixed, there will be 10 hours loadshedding later in the year. Lake Kariba is more than 20% lower than last year, and we had massive loadshedding then.

  9. #5  Step Aside – Is Back! 
    April 1, 2022 At 8:49 pm

    “So all this time there is no one to supply even a mere pole to Zesco? and yet you had a bunch of cadres boosting of owning companies on paper…”

    That is all it is………a country of middle men who produce nothing……….but

    Doubling the price of everything………..

    What has ZAFFICO Been doing for the past 10 years ???

  10. Pac president is looking for foreign funders to his stupid party activities. He has been funded by foreign forces so he wants to increase numbers. Zambian business man, you are alone.

  11. If past governments had taught Zambians to grow poles, we would be wasting time talking about lack of sticks. Unfortunately, we had people with no vision as our leaders.

  12. Ideally, Zesco should have first moped up whatever was available locally before it sought foreign suppliers. If it’s about prices the ZPPA Act provides for margins for both local and foreign suppliers. If a Zambian owned business is 15,% above the offer by a foreign business it’ll be considered as still competitive. Where these factors taken into account when the decision to import was made?

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