Minister of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining Bintony Kutsaira has urged Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom) to ensure it step up its efforts to connect electricity to clear the backload of delayed new connections that exists.
Kutsaira made the remarks on Tuesday in Blantyre when he addressed ESCOM’s top management team during a familiarisation tour.
He noted that it is worrisome that the corporation is failing to connect houses and offices for over five years.
“There is general outcry on delayed connections and we have had complaints from individuals and organisations who applied and made payments for new connections four or five years ago but the corporation is yet to connect power.
“This is worrisome because ESCOM is one of the key drivers of the nation’s economic development.
“We cannot talk of factories, production, mining, entertainment, food without ESCOM itself,” Kutsaira explained.
He said the delays have not spared some new MAREP centres across the country hence the need to do something about it.
“We have centres which were finalised and the contractors finished the wiring but ESCOM has not yet connected electricity to such centres.
“Parliament will open soon and the Members of Parliament will need sensible answers on these. Speedy action is needed,” the Minister added.
He appealed to ESCOM to work on strengthening their system in order to root out illegal connections which are suffocating the corporation’s revenue collection.
ESCOM is losing a lot of revenue through illegal connections as there are some individuals and organisations who are accessing electricity without paying for the service.
“As such it is important for ESCOM to put in place a tracking mechanism that will enable electricity to be provided to only deserving clients,” Kutsaira stated.
On his part, Escom chief executive officer Allexon Chiwaya said the corporation would think deep and work hard to sort out all the challenges related to delayed connections and illegal connections.
“TheMinister has pointed out a number of challenges and we will look at them using our strategic plan.We have to make strategies out of everything we have come across and implement them.
He also said the corporation has put in place measures to curb corruption.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :