Energy Minister: Hospitals to enjoy uninterrupted electricity supply

Energy Minister: Hospitals to enjoy uninterrupted electricity supply. Energy and Power Development Minister, Soda Zhemu, says the Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company (ZETDC) should not disconnect power at important institutions such as hospitals.

This comes as power generation by the Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC) has plummeted to 320MW in total as of 2 March 2023.

Responding to questions from MPs during a Q and A session in the National Assembly on Wednesday, Soda warned that unplanned power outages will continue until “dependable equipment” is installed at the coal-fired power station in Hwange. Said Soda:

The depressed power supply outage of Hwange Power Station resulted in three units being lost on 23 and 24 February 2023 respectively.

Hwange Power station lost 363MW from 440MW to 77MW. The old equipment is due for replacement.

The power outage at Hwange was a forced, unplanned fault on the day and until we have dependable equipment that we need, such outages will be common.

Soda said the government had put in place a national renewable energy policy in 2019 to make use of fossil, solar, wind and biogas energy. He said:

To date, the government has licensed 90 investments of 20 have been developed adding 68-96 megawatts to the national grid.

Zimbabwe has increased power imports from Zambia, South Africa and Mozambique from 300MW to 500MW, according to Soda. However, Zimbabwe is currently exporting 80MW to Namibia

In 2015, Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (ZESA) and Namibia’s electricity company (NamPower) signed a 15-year agreement for Zimbabwe to supply electricity to Namibia following the end of an initial agreement signed in 2006.

The initial agreement between ZESA and NamPower saw the Namibian power utility rehabilitating the Hwange Power Station in Zimbabwe at a cost of US$40 million.

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