Recently President Mnangagwa was left blushing as there was a power cut during a speech where a very important guest the country was courting present. This recently happened during a ceremony where the government was unveiling its Cyber City project where they intend to build a new fancy city in Mt Hampden. Those present at this mishap included Vice President Chiwenga, a billionaire they are courting Nawab Shaji Ul Mulk and other important officials.
Understandably the president was embarrassed and incensed:
This is very humiliating. The guys at Zesa do not know the time to do their power cuts. They cannot have their load shedding when we have guests like this.
Zimbabwe’s leaders deserve more of this
The powercut was almost certainly accidental. In Zimbabwe, like pretty much in other parts of Africa our leaders are known as bigwigs, chefs or “madhara”. They demand utmost respect and deference even when all they deserve is scathing criticism. ZESA officials would never dare to do this on purpose but maybe they should. Our esteemed leaders deserve more of this embarrassing powercuts so that they can address the problems that ZESA is really facing. We spent as much as 19 hours in the dark on some days due to load shedding why should people who profess and pretend to be our “humble servants” who were “chosen” by us to lead escape this treatment?
Despite pretending to be different the so-called second republic under our current leader has proved just as inept as the supposed first republic when it comes to solving our electricity woes. It has become a song we know by heart now. We need 2 000MW, which is not a lot by the way, but instead produce about 1 400 MW when all our power generating stations are working as they should. This has been the case for two decades.
We have planned projects that just need the government to apply itself in order to solve the power generation issue two of these stand out:
- The Batoka project was first explored before we even became Zimbabwe. Once in a while, the government sings about this project but thanks to corruption and ineptitude it has never been acted on. We have countless lies from the Herald on this to quote.
- The Gwanda Solar Project-here was first class government bungling that unfolded before our eyes. Corruption saw the deal being awarded to a briefcase company that was never going to implement this. Not only did we not see this to completion, but we also paid the convicted fraudster who got the deal about US$5 million in advance and then he even had the gall to sue the government (us taxpayers since the Zimbabwean government has no money).
You would think that the government would be working tirelessly to resolve this power generation issue with the utmost urgency it deserves. You would be wrong. Apart from cryptic upgrades at Hwange and Kariba that supposedly cost millions of dollars nothing has changed really. The only competent minister of energy we had, Fortune Chasi was unceremoniously fired and replaced by the very mute one we currently have.
It’s typical of the government to be unveiling yet another mega-deal project when our current capital is riddled with potholes. They want to build a new capital city when they cannot repair or take care of the ones they have and fulfil some colonialist’s dream. The whole thing deserved a powercut. Perhaps that darkness would have given them time to understand that we have a crisis in Zimbabwe despite them pretending there is no crisis.