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Hwange Power Station Run By Incompetent People: Mutambara


Former deputy Prime Minister in the Government of National Unity (GNU) Professor Arthur Mutambara says the Indian company Water and Power Consultancy Services (WAPCOS) contracted to manage works at Hwange thermal power stations is incompetent to carry out the duties.

The country has been experiencing power shortages which the power utility Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company (ZETDC) attributed to low water levels at the Kariba hydro power plant and maintenance at Hwange thermal power station.

Speaking during a Public Policy Research Institute of Zimbabwe (PPRIZ) Webinar on energy crisis, Prof. Mutambara said the company must be removed and work be done by Zimbabwe engineers.

“We must carry out the refurbishment of Hwange 1 and 6. They are too old and they’ve not been refurbished. It is a problem because WAPCOS the Indian company is incompetent. It must be removed. There’s a company called WAPCOS, which has got a management agreement to run Hwange 1 and 6, they are incompetent, they are not capable. They must be removed immediately and the job of managing Hwange 1 to 6 must be given to Zimbabwean engineers in the diaspora, in the country and then a plan laid out to refurbish Hwange 1 to 6 using the OEMs, the original equipment manufacturers.

“Now that Hwange 1 and 6 refurbishment can solve Zimbabwe’s energy problems. It can be done tomorrow, but WAPCOS must go. They are corrupt and they’re corrupt politicians in Zimbabwe. Hwange 7 and 8 is ready, the synchronization is taking place slowly. There’s a challenge technically on synchronizing Hwange 7 and 8 to the grid. Now, this is a very simple technical problem that engineers can solve, Zimbabwe’s engineers can solve, but the contractor who’s producing, who is working on 7 and 8 might be sabotaging the country because they want to be paid,” said Prof. Mutambara

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He said the prolonged technical issues at Hwange are part of scheme by the contractor to bargain for payment.

“The technical issues being talked about are part of sabotage by the contractor to bargain for payment for their projects and their other investments in Zimbabwe. We cannot allow that. If Hwange 7 and 8 come on board, Zimbabwe’s energy problems will go away,” he said.

Prof. Mutambara also said the energy sector is riddled with corruption, incompetence, lack of strategic thinking and also misapplication of human capital and lack of financing.

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