Zanu PF ineptitude created power crisis: Chamisa

CITIZENS Coalition for Change (CCC) leader Nelson Chamisa

CITIZENS Coalition for Change (CCC) leader Nelson Chamisa (pictured) has claimed that the power crisis bedevilling the country is a symptom of the ruling party’s lack of foresight, corruption and energy policy ineptitude, which have now plunged the country into darkness.

The country is currently enduring a punishing 18 to 22-hour daily load-shedding due to power shortage.

The Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC) stated yesterday on its website that the country was generating 560 megawatts (MW) against an optimum national daily demand of over 2 200MW.

Chamisa blamed the energy deficit to archaic infrastructure and lack of investment in the sector over the years.

“Decades of lack of investment in energy infrastructure, visionary leadership, is now haunting us. Corruption is killing us. Averting a problem is always cheaper than treating it. We have the answers. We will make Zimbabwe new and great. We’re ready,” Chamisa said in a Twitter post.

“We will address the socio-economic areas in our energy policies to include affordability and accessibility of energy from renewable sources, employment opportunities, diversity and inclusion; especially gender equity and benefits to children, youth participation, food security, and improved access to basic facilities,” he said.

The CCC leader said presently, the country’s renewable energy resources were underutilised.

“Our citizens’ government will prioritise a clean energy investment that will make power shortages, load shedding and the current Dark Age a thing of the past.  We will lead in the setting of targets for renewable energy based on the Nationally Determined Contributions interventions submitted to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, demand-supply scenario, grid absorption capacity, and the economic viability of our utilities to pay for renewable energy electricity from independent power producers.”

On the country’s energy policies, Chamisa said: “Current energy policies overlook the need for improving the share of renewable energy in the overall energy mix and addressing issues of climate mitigation and adaptation in this era of climate change. It is not prudent to use a hydro power station like Kariba which was designed mainly for peaking power, as a base load power station.”

People’s Unity Party leader Herbert Chamuka said over the years, Zanu PF’s electoral manifesto has been anchored on power supply, but the party has failed to deliver electricity.

Billboards from the 2018 elections campaign still linger showing President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s face with a message promising citizens availability of electricity, stating: Kujekesa Nyika Yese Nemagetsi (lighting up the whole country).

Last week in his column in a State-controlled weekly, Mnangagwa blamed climate change saying it had caused low water levels at Kariba Dam, forcing authorities to use hydro-generated power station sparingly.

On Wednesday, opposition legislators took exception to Energy and Power Development minister Zhemu Soda’s snubbing of Parliament to explain the power crisis.

Glen View North MP Fani Munengami (CCC) raised a matter of priviledge saying: “This House should note that the country is in darkness. People get electricity from 12 midnight until 4am in the morning, both residential and industrial. Members of Parliament requested that Soda should come and issue a ministerial statement in the House. These issues have been pending for a long time and are perennial. Electricity has become a big problem. It is quite surprising that you find people ruling till Kariba dries. This has never happened since independence.”

National Assembly Deputy Speaker Tsitsi Gezi responded: “I will start from where you ended that a country is ruled until it ends — nyika inovakwa nevene vayo (the country is built by its citizens) and until Kariba Dam fills up. You also requested the responsible honourable minister to come; the minister will be reminded to come.”

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