By KENNEDY MUPESENI –
THE Government is keen to review some of the bulk power supply agreements to make Zesco Limited profitable, Energy Minister Mathews Nkhuwa has said.
Mr Nkhuwa said some of the power purchase agreements had Zesco signed previously were lopsided hence the need for a review to make the power utility company user friendly.
“Zesco is ‘bleeding’ badly because of certain agreements which are lopsided, things need to change, a meetings with stakeholders will soon be held to look at certain things which hinder progress, something is not going on well,” he said in Kitwe recently.
Mr Nkhuwa said sometimes Zesco bought electricity at 10.3 cents and sold it at between 6.8 and nine cents which he said did not make business sense hence the need for the review.
He said that most of the capacity charges and changes in the pricing of electricity were pushed to the Government thus measures should be taken to correct things.
Mr Nkhuwa said the Government was committed to make electricity affordable to spur economic development in the country.
“Our people get salaries in Kwacha; Government approved 75 per cent electricity increment under difficult circumstances, there is need to draw a balance,” he said.
Mr Nkhuwa said Government was saddened that in Shiwang’andu where a power generation plant was recently installed only 25 per cent local people were connected to electricity thereby failing to appreciate the purpose of having a power plant at their doorstep.
He would also like to see improved relationship between the power utilities and the mines to avoid economic disturbance for the country to be on track in achieving its development goals.