LOAD-SHEDDING shall be a thing of the past once I commission the Kafue Gorge Lower Power Station, which will produce 750 megawatts, President Edgar Lungu has pledged.
While many rural places in Zambia continue to yearn for energy breath-through, insofar as getting connected to the national electricity grid, those that are powered have their own desire – an end to frequent power outages.
President Lungu, during the ceremonial opening of Parliament this morning, made a welcome promise that will, if actualised, uninterruptedly light up towns and brighten citizens’ faces.
Firstly, and correctly so, the President agreed that load-shedding continues to haunt: “us and affect our livelihoods.”
“[But] I am happy to report that load-shedding shall be a thing of the past once I commission the Kafue Gorge Lower Power Station which will produce 750 megawatts,” President Lungu promised.
“Our current electricity deficit is 810 megawatts. Therefore, the Kafue Gorge Lower Power Station, and other hydro-power stations that are coming into being, including solar power stations, will certainly wipe out this power deficit.”
He thanked Zambians for the understanding and the resilience they have shown during this difficult period.
“I can assure the Zambian people that my government has invested enough in electricity generation to turn the tide around,” President Lungu said.
President Lungu highlighted that the government continues to recognise the importance of the energy sector in facilitating social and economic activities across different sectors.
He recalled that in 2016, the government undertook to increase Zambia’s electricity generation capacity and access to electricity.
President Lungu happily reported to the House that the electricity generation capacity increased from 2,800 megawatts in 2016 to 3, 000 megawatts this year.
He explained that such was a result of an addition of 160 megawatts to the existing capacity from hydro, thermal and solar energy sources.
“These are the Ndola Energy Power Plant upgrade, the Musonda Falls Power Station upgrade, and the Bangweulu, Ngonye and Copperbelt Energy Corporation solar plants.
While the electricity generation capacity has increased, the actual electricity generation has been fluctuating due to drought that has affected most of the hydro power stations,” he disclosed.
“This is happening at the time when the demand for electricity has been steadily increasing. To address this rising demand, I am happy to report that an additional 750 megawatts of electricity is expected to come on board by the end of the year after the completion of the Kafue Gorge Lower Power Station and the Chunga Solar Power Project in Kafue National Park.”
President Lungu stressed that the coming on board of the Kafue Gorge Lower Power Station would mark a major milestone in electricity generation in Zambia, “since the construction of the Kariba and Kafue Gorge Power Stations many years ago.”
©Kalemba September 12, 2020