Shocker! Escom owes Malawi commercial banks over K40 billion

Sole power provider,  Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom) owes the country’s commercial banks and companies money amounting to K40 billion.

Kambala signing the visitors book at ESCOM Power Station
After visiting the National Control Centre
Visiting the generators managed by AGGREKO

This is despite waves of load shedding that have, for years, dwindled business in the country.

According to Escom’s CEO Alexon Chiwaya, the debt dates back to last year.

This was revealed during a familiarization tour which Energy Minister Newton Kambala had at the institution’s Chichiri power station on Monday.

Kambala has tasked officials at the energy supplier to provide a detailed report on how the debts came about.

“We have received a report from Escom management that they are struggling with debts from banks and they also have little access to loans from suppliers because they haven’t paid them for a long time.

“The ministry wants to unlock the company so that it should start providing better services to the general public,” said the minister.

Kambala told the media after touring Escom’s National Control Centre that management will be asked to write a report why they ended up with such huge debts to see how the government can come in to assist.

The minister noted that the utility company is struggling to provide efficient services because of poor financing.

Kambala also said it is disheartening that Escom has been plundered by unscrupulous politicians  from the past government such as the massive siphoning of fuel by non-members of staff, most of whom were connected by the previous government.

He said once Escom presents its report, the new government is set to make sure that such corruption should be stopped once and for all to help the corporation stabilize in order to provide excellent services to the people and the industry.

“The government wants to make sure that Escom should be protected from corruption and we will see how the Ministry of Finance can come in.

“From now on, we want Escom and other parastatals to be prudent enough on how they use their resources. People should not be stealing money from institutions,” he said.

One of the suppliers Escomowes money to is its sister company, Electricity Generation Company (Malawi) Ltd (Egenco) and when asked if this company is necessary, Kambala said there was need to assess if Egenco is serving its purpose well.

He said the idea to delink Escom’s services was necessary at the point it was initiated but government might consider to evaluate if Egenco is still needed.

The Minister said from what he had been familiarized with on his tour of Escom’s National Control Centre, the company’s technology operations have improved to provide good services.

Of late power load shedding has minimized mostly as Escom is utilising fully the power generators at Power Station managed by Aggreko.

Chiwaya said due to the Covid-19 pandemic most of the industries where most of the company’s revenue comes from have been shut down and thus they fail to honour their debts

He also said they were generating less that 300 megawatts from the needed 800 megawatts which made them generate inadequate revenue.

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Opportunist
Opportunist
3 months ago

But u could afford to be supplying fuel to some useless people on daily basis and steal some of the fuel.U will dance this tune to yourself

Declaration of Victory and third Revolution

It will not be witch-hunt to bring the culprits to book. The witches must be found and face the law. Kamuzu warned us that multiparty was expensive but it did not mean that we abuse taxes to run party affairs. This shows that the agenda of dpp was simply to enrich themselves and not manage the affairs of the people. If this is the trend then people should react the way we reacted when Jane Ansah cheated during the elections. Game on and take them on. Chilima should head this.

One Malawi One Nation
3 months ago

Who was the Chairman of the board during this period of massive plunder????? Tell us. He must have been involved . Such amounts go through the Board

Tryson Kalanda
Tryson Kalanda
3 months ago

wogula ma Judge

Joe
Joe
3 months ago

The bankers himself. The one being accused of bribing the judges.

Peter Bakali
Peter Bakali
3 months ago

What about the ESCOM Tenders Awarded to Chinese and Foreign / Local Companies there shiuld be Corruption in Awarding the Contracts Government should look into that Also

Mayi
Mayi
3 months ago

Apa tikuwona mabwana awiri opusa. Bwana waku Escom komanso waku bank komwe Escom imabweleka ndalama. When were either of you gonna say, enough!
Kambala nawonso??? Koma! We need to send bull dozer there kapenatu?

Telon
3 months ago

This minister must be very dull. He may be an engineer but not a hands-on manager. How does he make conclusions on how the K40 billion debt has been acquired before the report, he has asked, is provided? How does government bail out Escom on it’s debt before a forensic examination of how the debt came about? Bwana Minister let Escom get audited under certain strict terms of special audit. After the audit report is out that’s when government will decide what should be done. On why Egenco was created please tread carefully before deciding to retain or disband it.

nyarugwe
nyarugwe
3 months ago
Reply to  Telon

Telon has completely missed the point. Bailing out is to ensure the continuity of supply of power. Audit is to establish how the resources have been utilized.

Lego
3 months ago
Reply to  Telon

Stop confusing yourself before you confuse us.The minister is just telling the public about the debt which Escom is owing the banks.For continuity of the service will need to bail out the organization while they are auditing how such money come out.Where are you not understanding Telon?

Banda
Banda
3 months ago

Very poor statements here from Chiwaya because first of all they Escom buys electricity from Engenco therefore they have a market for what they buy as a reseller and are compensated for that Electricity. When did Escom ever supply 800 megawatts of power?. He now suggests Escom will not be profitable until it can supply 800mw? To supply 800mw will need bigger users, bigger supply lines and equipment. Then to suggest because companies are closed there is a reduced amount of revenue being received. Yet you are running Generators that have excessive costs because of diesel. Yet diesel costs are… Read more »

Wikleaks
Wikleaks
3 months ago

No big surprise. Tonse economic predators like Nsungama and Mikaya have been visiting Escom for orders. This company will never be free.

Lego
3 months ago
Reply to  Wikleaks

That is your wishful DPP supporter.With that syndrome Malawi will never change.We need to get rid of such people like you Wikleaks who always think things can never change.Lets change the way we think,the way we act etc….Listen to the lyrics of TUPAC on the song entitled “CHANGES.”

Desderata Marmite
Desderata Marmite
3 months ago

“WADYA BALALIKA” – was the strategy DPP was using. I won’t go into details, but my simple revelation should give Malawians an insight as to how our tax payers money was being misused. Dr Alex Chiwaya, the Chief Executive of ESCOM is married to Norman Chisale’s wife’s aunt. Chisale is incarcerated because of embezzlement, ESCOM is accused of amassing unexplained debts – here your guess is as good as mine. Greediness is what is going to destroy these people; yeah!! It is all in the family – blood related.

Amy
Amy
3 months ago

Escom is one of the organization which needs thorough cleaning. It is incomprehensible to think that escom has been making losses. The vultures should removed.

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