Escom gensets arrive in Malawi to minimise intensify of blackouts

Blantyre residents on Thursday witnessed the arrival of the much awaited Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (ESCOM)’s stand – by diesel powered generators that are expected to add 78 megawatts (MW) to the country’s national power grid by January end and ease extended load shedding hours Malawians have been experiencing which Escom attributed to the decline in the water levels in Lake Malawi and the Shire River.

One of the trucks transporting the ESCOM gensets

Escom board chairperson Perks Ligoya, who was accompanied by Ministry of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining chief director Chimwemwe Banda, Escom chief executive officer Alexxon Chiwaya and other senior Escom officials, told journalists at Zobue in Mozambique that the arrival of the gensets  would contribute to the improvement of power supply by reducing blackouts, thereby improving the country’s economy.

Ligoya said by the end of January the  gensets will be installed and  78 MW [megawatts] will be  added to the national grid.

“All stakeholders and valued consumers shall definitely be communicated on the time frame, but the truth of the matter is that the installation will commence anytime soon so that the stand-by power mitigating measure serves its intended purpose,” Ligoya said.

According to Escom officials,  out of the total 78 MW, 35 MW will be installed at Chichiri in Blantyre, 23 MW at Chinyama in Kasungu and the remaining 20 MW will be installed at Kanengo in Lilongwe.

Escom, the distributor of electricity, had messed up the procurement of generators hence the delay.

According to published reports, in December 2016, Escom’s evaluation committee recommended that lots one and two in Mapanga and Kanengo be awarded to APR energy with evaluated prices of $34.6 million and $24.9 million while lot three at Chinyama in Kasungu was recommended for award to Aggreko International Projects at $18.9 million.

However, when the bids’ evaluation team presented its report to the internal procurement committee (IPC), the recommendations were not upheld.

In November 2016, President Mutharika, as part of short-term intervention measures into the power supply crisis, told the nation that Escom would acquire diesel-operated generators on lease basis for an initial estimated period of 18 months.

But the botched transaction  not only just affected electricity users, but also failed to meet one of Mutharika’s key objectives of his electricity agenda.

Malawi power generation woes  moved from bad to worse last year with a loss of 20 megawatts (MW) within a week, a situation that prompted a drastic load shedding programme with some parts of the country staying without power over 24 hours.

With over  129 trucks transporting the gensets and various equipments arriving  in the country on Thursday evening at Mwanza Border Post from Mozambique’s Beira Port,  Malawians can now breathe a sigh of relief.

 

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Citizen
Guest

The president, Ministers and MPs should not only receive hefty salaries, allowances and looting without getting satisfied or arrested, but they should also pay taxes so they could feel the pain poor Malawians endure by paying taxes from their little expenses.

Jeke
Guest

From what I have read its pathetic that Malawians don’t want to invest into cheap sources of energy. We went to school but we are not capable to read around us. If you read you will see that solar energy, diesel powered generators are not cheap and not used. Check with developed countries, what source of energy do they use. They are rich but use cheap sources of energy.

Redeemed
Guest

Malawians are such a negative and bitter nation who always chose to see the negative in everything. I can’t imagine leading such a pervasive nation, no wonder your leaders end up getting fed up and start serving themselves. Its tiring to work with such confused citizens who don’t even know what they really want.

Pathological liar
Guest

Kkkkk endeed a bunch of dunderheads. U may a whole republic excited wth diesel run gensets for electricity. Any adjustment in fuel prices will entail immediate increase in electricity tarrifs.

Thats a country that has bn independent for 53 years. Should this continue be the kind of leadership, then we have another 100 years of being rated the poorest nation on planet earth

LIPHAVA NAMANDWA NGONGOLIWA
Guest
LIPHAVA NAMANDWA NGONGOLIWA
Nothing to celebrate here. After past MCP governments added better sustainable power through hydro power plants, your wisdom all these years you have been yearning to rule Malawians by rigging elections is to buy gensets as a long term investment? These will increase diesel thefts. This shows you are brainless, spineless and perfect idiots who are not fit to lead and invest wisely on our behalf. You just know how to steal money from these utility companies and have no plans to invest in these companies for the sake of your children after fucking your many wives bevade of too… Read more »
Goodfellas
Guest

Absolutely right ! They had gas turbine generator was operating by diesel in perfect working condition was stand by for Blantyre are bought by me as scrap through tender upon asking what was the reason for selling? They said too costly to run ! Hello ? How you going to run this new Generator arrived ? With water ?

pat
Guest

Asamundu ndi amene adabweretsa chitukuko chamagetse oyendera mphamvu ya madzi, osati MCP. Muzilitsat ndi kulidziwa ziko lanu

LIPHAVA NAMANDWA NGONGOLIWA
Guest
LIPHAVA NAMANDWA NGONGOLIWA
You are right that some of those were installed by colonialists but MCP had also investments on the same Shire river. Whether that was not indicated in my comment does not solve the current problem. After 1994 the so called Democrats who took over from MCP never appreciated the need for continous investments in hydro, solar, coal and wind power. And these are greedy and very corrupt nepotistic Southern Region Presidents who with their tribesmen stood on podia and said ZINTHU ZATANI?. Or have this simple and childish slogan for the lack of creative thinking: DDP WOYEEEEE! I later realised… Read more »
mundo
Guest

Mbuzi iwe

V=IR
Guest
Thumbs up to Malawi Government. The diesel gensets are the most feasible immediate solution to our problem. Lead time for construction of a hydro power plant is minimum five years.Malawians cannot wait for five years to have Mpatamanga or Kholombidzo hydro power station.Unfortunately these are also on the same shire river and what ever happens to shire river would affect them. We plead with Government to expedite the Kamwamba hydro power plant project and the Malawi-Mozambique interconnector. These two projects are the long term solutions to our problems.South Africa is ready to provide 500mw through the Malawi Mozambique interconnector. 1000mw… Read more »
LIPHAVA NAMANDWA NGONGOLIWA
Guest
LIPHAVA NAMANDWA NGONGOLIWA
How many lead times have these Southern Region governments had since 1994? Assuming there was a grace period of 5 years after 1994, how many batches of 5 year lead times do you still have which could have allowed such investments to take place? The fact of the matter is that Southern Region Presidents have been busy with looting and nepotism. They can not even allow ESCOM to dredge the input ponds to remove silt because of frequent deferment of such budgets as politicians were eying the same money to enrich themselves through over and mis-procuremens of goods and services… Read more »
gogodasi
Guest

The difference will be the same as the poor will still be in the dark for their inability to pay for high tariff of electricity brought about by the gen sets. This is just another political gimmick and not to make Malawi prosper. The Ministers and MPs should now be paying tax so they can feel the way we do.

QueenB
Guest

Investing in solar energy is far much better and cheaper for consumers than this. This is a temporary fix, think long term. Mbuzi zokhazokha!

V=IR
Guest
The sun is a powerful force, and one most people take for granted. Every day, like clockwork, the sun rises and falls – without fail. As the earth orbits the sun, the light and energy released by this giant ball of gas fall onto earth and light the land.Without the sun’s light, all living things on earth would eventually cease to exist. Luckily, however, scientists predict that the sun will last at least another few billion years. Because it is a nearly endless source of energy, and shines naturally every day, solar energy is the perfect replacement for current energy… Read more »
Mulungu Wayankha
Guest

Mbuyomu mwakhala mukunyoza kumanena kuti boma lalephera. Lero ma genset ndi awa abwera. Bwanji manyazi anthu inu omangotsutsa zili zonse. Amabungwe tsutsanitu apa popeza palibe chabwino chomwe mumayamikira. Keep on delivering the promises APM. We are proud of you

Gupta
Guest

I have never seen such a bunch of jokers . So the whole ESCOM chairman, recycled CEO Chiwaya, and very senior government officials had to go to Zobue to ” welcome ” gen sets ?

Kwanai
Guest

Kikikikkk sure,to them it’s a great achievement but with no resultant.

Mugabe
Guest

I bet they claimed allowances for that. ………. So pathetic you mean they had to roll a red carpet for gensets????

NOMAN
Guest

kkkkkkkk

Citizen
Guest

This is retrogressive development. Nothing exciting. Consumers will pay a lot to have lights. Expensive!!!!

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