ZIMBABWEANS, for the first time in several years, enjoyed uninterrupted power supply this past festive season.
BY BLESSED MHLANGA
For the past two weeks, the entire country has not had any load shedding, something that has not happened ever since power shortages beset the country.
This was due to reduced demand, stable supplies from Hwange Power Station and contingency power imports from neighbouring South Africa, Zesa spokesperson Fullard Gwasira said yesterday.
But Gwasira warned of more and lengthy blackouts in the coming weeks if water levels at Kariba Dam remained low.
“During the festive season power supply significantly improved,” he said.
“This was because of plant reliability at Hwange Power Station and as such generation was stable.
“This was also aided by the situation in December when most of the companies go on annual shutdown and therefore demand is low.”
Gwasira said Zesa was also importing 300 MW of prepaid electricity from South Africa for the first time in many years, adding that the power utility would only continue to import if consumers paid their bills.
“The nation should be aware that these imports are prepaid and therefore if we don’t receive money, we will not be able to import from South Africa,” he said.
“We have been forced to cut power generation at Kariba from 750 megawatts to 475 megawatts.
“The rains appear to be low and there are high chances that if water levels in Kariba don’t improve significantly, we will be forced to cut power generation to slightly above 200 megawatts in January.”
Zimbabwe’s electricity demands are over 2 000 MW but the country currently produces less than 1 000 MW.