Zambia has recently announced ambitious plans to generate 5,000 megawatts (MW) of solar energy in the next four years, but some experts are questioning the feasibility and realism of these plans.
President Hakainde Hichilema made the announcement after signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in Abu Dhabi, stating that the country has only developed 3,500 MW of electricity in the last 58 years of its independence and that this new investment would bring in an additional 2,000 MW, within a shorter period of time. However, in a Facebook post, his advisor wrote that “over 5,000 MW is being unlocked for the next 4 years.”
Fred M’membe, President of the Socialist Party, is among the the people who are challenging these claims.
“They never get tired of boasting, self-praising, lying and making contradictory statements,” he said in a statement. “Which statement is factual? Are they unlocking 2000 MW or 5000 MW in the next 4 years? And why are they issuing different statements on the same issue?”
Dr M’membe also criticized the government for making promises before any concrete plans have been put in place, calling the claims “lies and contradictions.”
Dr. Lubinda Haabazoka, an economist, also expressed skepticism about the government’s plans. “It’s very important that policy makers consult with various stakeholders including engineers so that when a promise is made, that promise is realistic,” he said.
Dr. Haabazoka pointed out that there are two types of power sources: base power, which is stable and predictable, and variable power, which is unstable. He explained that hydroelectric power is base power, while solar energy is variable and can only be added to a maximum of 15% of the total installed base load capacity. In Zambia, this means that a maximum of 480 MW of solar can be added to the grid.
Dr. Haabazoka also highlighted the limitations of the current infrastructure, “Our grid cannot accept an additional 5000MW of power without being upgraded! That is too much power because we are basically doing times two power supply on our grid! So we need a smart and upgraded grid to accommodate such amount of power and that takes huge capital investments.” Dr. Haabazoka advised the government to focus on increasing base power first, such as through the Batoka power project, and then upgrading the grid to accommodate the additional power.
While the government’s plans to generate 5,000 MW of solar energy in the next four years may be ambitious, experts have raised concerns about the feasibility and realism of these plans. They call for more consultation with stakeholders, including engineers, and a more comprehensive and well-planned approach to achieving these goals. This will be crucial to ensure the success of this project, and to avoid disappointment among the citizens of Zambia who are counting on these promises to be fulfilled.
The president should sometimes keep quiet about certain things. Let the technical people make these pronouncements. We are accused of hating you by your supporters because they just support even wrong things.
Hope you he will not do 360 degree turn round on this pronouncement.
Deja Vu – With you I am afraid he can never win even if he kept quiet
Only because he is not bemba…………
@Tarino… how can I criticize what is not there. I criticize him because like this one he wants to falsely pacify us during the current situation which he claimed to have completely eliminated.
@Spaka…as for you I don’t support or criticize him because of his tribe. The other day I gave kudos to one minister this became an issue with you… ambivalent troll!
Zambia is a funny place whare you have a Russian trained Economist making public statements regarding electrical engineering….its clear that this Lubinda Haabazoka is not a professional.
Only believe this serial liar if you enjoy disappointment
Thanks for the down vote chi tarino. Sad f00I
“More money in your pockets in 90 Days”…you gotta be hypocrites if you didn’t challenge Sata yet now you challenge HH’s promise of 5000MW .
Membe is just jealous………….
As for the economist, he not one iota of technology, even economics seems a challenge to him……….
What is meant by solar farms in all districts is that those solar farms will supply its location district first , freeing that district on and off from the grid………….
All solar farms don’t have to all pump their output onto the grid at the same time…….
Communication is the UPND’s Achilles heel and needs to be revamped before it is too late. Speaking too fast and too early without validating the facts only serves to damage own credibility.
HH has only himself to blame …he has placed fooools and empty suits in the most influencial Ministry that deals with communication
You can question it all you want,but still credit goes to HH for setting ambitious targets .The PF wasted a decade with negative benchmarks.
Question is why did he assure the nation during his last press conference that he had eliminated loadshedding ” because of the work we have been doing in the background” end of quote.
The problem when you lie too much, and you’ve been caught then you start looking around for more lies to justify your initial lie and this is what’s happening with HH and UPND….these guys are just blowing hot hair and they think it’s a joke…people are suffering….
@Grant Kolala. These upnd praise singers clearly can’t read nor research. Or could it be they are blinded by their allegiances? Masdar are not saying or publishing anything about this deal, but they have published everything on all other sealed deals. All the news feeds are about hh said we have signed his and that. No details beyond that. You useless praise singers should take some time to think, read and research. Dear God please get rid of this scourge that has befallen our nation.
Lungu and PF set the presidential bar so low with their goats to Saudi MOUs , that………..
The PF rats on LT think setting up solar farms is a miracle only god can perform………..
Common folks ……..its just a collection of solar panels………….no magic, no miracles.
Zambians were left in a mess by lungu for sure………..
Such a mess that Chinese are needed to build a car park…………
What is so difficult in setting up solar farms, a collection of solar panels ????
You are shocking with your low self esteem………..
can you fail to comprehend setting up solar farms ????
Lubinda Haabazoka, and Fred M’membe know that if HH and the UPND manage to put up even just 2,000 MW of Solar power by 2026, its game over for them politically.
In fact just 400MW of Solar power is enough to help Zambia avoid the current load shedding were are facing in the low months of November, December and January.
The remaining 3,000MW can come in after 2026, By then the EU backed Tanzania -Zambia inter-connector will be completed to open up the East African market.By 2030(In juxt 7 years ), total demand in countries included in the Eastern Africa Power Pool and Southern African Power Pool are expected to double to approximately 1060 TWh.
This issue is clearly out of their depths.
@Independent. That’s very extremely shallow thinking! But typical of a upnd praise singer/sympathiser/cadre. So in your upnd wrapped mind you are assuming that the Zambian population will be static and no SME, self-employed youths, and so on and so forth will spring up?
Shall we tell the President? That’s what I assume is going on…. experts who know issues are being stopped from telling the president the truth lest it annoys him.
Same trap as PF getting excited with non-binding pledges and announcing them really fast in quick and real time, a semblance of working, which infection has also gone to some law enforcements, announcing arrests very fast with no convictions.
I don’t think Zambians realise what’s happening to them and the people pulling the strings. What we are witnessing are plans to recolonise our country which have been put in place over the years. 2H and his fellow opposition leaders belong to the group which has been planning this for years. They are captured souls with a clear mandate from their bosses. Watch what will happen to him if he refuses to follow orders. Look at South Africa and learn fast.
@ Future Zed, Stop making noise. Find $2 billion and invest it in renewable energy otherwise shut up.
It was at 14hrs after being sworn in, now it is four years?
You want the President personally to come and help you with your harvest!!
I don’t need his help or anyone for that matter.
He is the type I type of a person. I don’t like such people. He’s not doing people a favor so he should just work na funga chinwa apana talk talk talk… can’t you see he’s stifling his ministers and other competent people?
If you feel threatened by a statement of intent that will benefit ALL Zambians including yowaselufu, then you are very evil in your heart. Habanjoka and Membe are not energy experts, they are failures who are praying and fasting that the intended project doesn’t materialise.
@Dejavu: Yes and you ve problem with that? even you had a problem with that, there is fackaaal you can do about it anyway! And this goes to all of you PF cadres. There is ………… you can do about it. Okey! Complain , moan all you want. We are the drivers. And we will take you where we want. BEsides you beggers even if we start hunting down one by one and revenge, there is no one you can complain to cos you equally chased foereign Diplomats and even them they want you to suffere and even more than us. China is now dancing to HH’s tune, as they ve seen that major Super powers are on his side. So futsek all of PF!
Ignorant imbecile…if you have no capacity to argue with a sober mind don’t pick on me. Ambivalent f.o.o.l
The truth is Hakainde is a “chilandelande” just take note of what Hakainde has been saying from opposition to now. An average person should be able to mount a powerful and accurate conclusion based on Hakainde’s pronouncements. Hakainde is too removed from the people who voted for him. We new that he was pretending to be closer to the grassroots just for the vote. He is not real. Hakainde is worse than what he cunningly described his predecessors.
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