Tendai Biti Says Electricity Blackouts Reflect Leadership Crisis | Full Thread
Citizens’ Coalition for Change (CCC) vice president Tendai Biti has blamed the ZANU PF-led government for the country’s prolonged electricity challenges saying little has been done to increase electricity generation since the 1980s.
Posting on Twitter, Biti also said that the expansion of the Hwange thermal power station was an unnecessary and costly project and the country should have used the funds to harness clean sources of energy. He wrote:
1)The energy situation in Zimbabwe is completely out of hand. Blackouts are killing industry, and farming & negatively affecting working families. The power crises is a leadership issue. #ZANU knew Hwange Units had to be decommissioned in the 80s but did nothing on generation.
2)Of Zim s installed capacity of 2000MW from Hwange & Kariba less than 700 MW are being generated at any given time. It is therefore important to attend to fresh power projects that will generate at least 4000 MW. Batoka remains the most important long-term project.
3)Hwange 7&8 currently under construction with Chinese funds is simply too small & overpriced. Those resources should have been invested in alternative green fuel including solar plants& hydro stations in Manicaland. Zambia has done well without the pursuit of damaging fossil energy.
4)Power transmission remains the second challenge Zim’s grid is archaic & needs modernization. Besides, it has limited reach. That only 30% of citizens have access to electricity 43 years after independence is a shame. Energy is a human right & a development enabler.
5) A program of rural electrification is therefore as imperative as it is long overdue. But any offer or loan from anyone to assist in this direction while welcome must surely be approved by Parliament in terms of s327 of the Constitution. Lastly, Zim must deal with Demand Side issues.
6) There is a culture of energy waste, of not paying bills, or use of energy consuming gadgets.#ZANU elites do not pay energy bills on their farms & #ZESA is owed billions. Prepaid meters are a must. Solar panels & solar geysers should be a must for households.
7) Demand side management should also look at how #ZESA is run A few years ago it was unbundled but there is no evidence that unbundling was effective. A study must therefore be carried out to determine whether there is a case for rebundling. What is the best practice, and what works better?
8) Demand-side management must also look at the pricing model of energy. It is not sustainable that power imported at 13cents a KW is sold at 3cents a KW. But any pricing model must involve the consumer in a transparent process that avoids arbitrage or undercutting the institution.
9) Lastly Zim must deal with corruption The Dema Power project being an example The 2018 #ZESA forensic audit exposed billions that were lost through corruption. Scammers & reptiles have made millions through various schemes. The energy sector including fuel is the most corrupt in Zim.
10) When everything else is said & done it is clear that the energy sector like Zim itself needs a new consensus. The fact is problems are never solved by those that created them. In short, we need new leaders.