Load shedding due to natural causes, not lack of Govt’ action – Kaisala

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UPND chairperson for Energy Charles Kaisala says the country is experiencing the worst drought in decades which has caused the resurfacing of load shedding.

Therefore Kaisala has emphasized the need to stop politicising the drought and offer constructive criticism.

Kaisala acknowledged the public’s frustration over load shedding caused by the drought and stated that the outages were due to natural causes, not a lack of government effort.

“You see, the impact (of the drought) is definitely reduced generation, because you see, this country, we depend on hydropower, which is about 86 percent,” he explained. “So basically, if we don’t have enough water inflows from the Zambezi Basin and the Kariba Dam, then our power generation is drastically reduced.”

The chairman acknowledged the public’s frustration about power outages but assured them the government is addressing the issue.

“People are angry. But you see, unfortunately, they are directing the anger to Zesco and also,unfortunately, people are even abusing the name of the Head of State.”

“I think it’s very unfortunate. Some of these things you look at the effects of just a natural change of weather.”

He outlined plans of mitigation to diversify the energy mix, stating: “We are very clear that even before we took office, we were talking about reducing dependence on hydropower and also to diversify. so we can have renewable energy technology you know like solar.”

Kaisala acknowledged the challenges involved in establishing a new hydropower station but stressed the importance of finding solid solutions.

“To develop a hydropower station, it takes long, about five years,” he said. “So we, as UPND, we have been propagating on the fact that we need to concentrate in the short-term and medium-term situation, to go renewable with the solar, which is the quickest.”

By Moses Makwaya

Kalemba March 22, 2024

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