HARARE – Energy and Power Development minister Dzikamai Mavhaire has been summoned to Parliament this week to explain the intensifying electricity shortages.
The motion was moved by MDC legislators James Maridadi of Mabvuku- Tafara and Gift Chimanikire of Southerton.
The legislators have recommended that the parliamentary portfolio committee on Mines and Energy conducts an urgent inquiry into the energy sector. Chimanikire said they were expecting Mavhaire to come Parliament to debate the motion on electricity shortages, which have adversely affected the nation.
“Logically, he is expected to sit through the debate and hear the points and facts from legislators’ contributions and then he gives the government policy response to Parliament,” Chimanikire told the Daily News.
“The nation needs to know what is happening and it is important for him to brief Parliament on the issue.
“We are also worried by the ever-increasing gap between demand and supply and these are issues we expect the minister to respond to in Parliament.”
Maridadi said citizens were alarmed by the intermittent power cuts to both domestic and commercial consumers as a result of load-shedding and power faults.
He was also concerned by the lack of capacity by Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (Zesa) to generate enough electricity for the country.
The lawmaker also highlighted the lack of capacity to attend timeously to faults and the flight of qualified and experienced personnel at Zesa, which has adversely effected the electricity supply industry.
Zimbabwe requires 2 200 megawatts (MW) per day while Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC,) a subsidiary Zesa Holdings mandated with electricity generation, is producing about 861 MW, with 150 MW being exported to Namibia as repayment of a loan paid to refurbish Hwange Power Station.
The load-shedding programme is expected to run until February 2014 and it is affecting homes, business and industries countrywide. Only major hospitals and strategic facilities are being excluded.