•ZESCO exhausts water allocated for power generation in 2024.

  • ZESCO Board and Management have been grossly incompetent,careless and irresponsible
  • Further ZESCO must disclose details of all recent power purchase agreements signed with potential independent power producers as this has capacity to bankrupt the utility company.

Lusaka-Saturday,21st June 2024

We have noted a statement attributed to the ZESCO Acting Deputy Director Distribution and Customer Services, Kennedy Muchanga who has disclosed that the utility company has overdrawn its share of water allocatedbto it by the Zambezi River Authority for generation of power for the year 2024.

For this reason, ZESCO says besides the normal load-shedding timetable, it will begin to implement an aggressive emergency rationing of power, which will result in more hours of load-shedding to its customers beyond the published time table.

This worrying development is a clear act of irresponsible leadership and a demonstration gross negligence.

It is clear that despite the limited allocation of water given to ZESCO, especially in light of the drought that affected the country, ZESCO kept generating power at full throttle, so that it could meet its power exports agreements entered into.

We must remember that all stakeholders had advised both the Minister of Energy, Hon. Peter Kapala and ZESCO Board and Management to cancel the export of power to Namibia, Botswana, and South Africa so that the available power could adequately meet local demands and also avoid extended hours of load-shedding.

It is inconceivable that despite being given a quota of allocated water to use from Kariba Lake in 2024 by the Zambezi River Authority, ZESCO disregarded the guidance and now has ended up using all the water allocated to it by June 2024.

This typifies the prevalent excessive incompetence, negligence and poor leadership exhibited in the operations at ZESCO since 2021.

This poor leadership has not spared the Ministry of Energy as Hon. Peter Kapala who, recently on the floor of the House in Parliament, assured that that the country would not suffer any load-shedding or unnecessary power cuts in 2024.

These assurance have turned out to be utterly false.

The cost of these power cuts to the economy, is incalculable and businesses, especially MSMEs, may not recover.

Further households are being highly inconvenienced with the loadshedding as refrigerated food stuffs frequently go bad.

We note with concerns that load-shedding has now moved from 12 hours to periods ranging from 24hrs to 48hrs in some circumstances.

The Zambezi River Authority (the Authority) allocated 16 Billion Cubic Meters (BCM) of water to be shared equally between ZESCO Limited (ZESCO) and Kariba Hydro Power Company (KHPC) for their power generation operations at Kariba for the year 2024.

The 2024 water allocation was informed by the 2023/2024 rainfall forecasts made by the Southern Africa Climate Outlook Forum-27 (SARCOF-27) and the corresponding downscaled projections by the National Metrological Agencies of Zambia and Zimbabwe, which all showed a high probability of a normal to below normal 2023/2024 rainfall season for the Kariba Lower Catchment and normal to above normal rainfall season for the Kariba Upper catchment.

Further, there is need to disclose all Power Purchase Agreements recently signed to help disclose the price that ZESCO will be buying power from Independent Power Producers (IPP).

We note that the numerous agreements have capacity to immediately bankrupt ZESCO.

We note that the few Agreements signed with current Independent Power Producers such as Mamba Collieries and Ndola Energy are draining resources from ZESCO as the utility company buys the power at expensive prices but sells it to domestic and industrial customers at a cheaper and lower price, resulting in ZESCO in perpetual debt to independent power producers.

This is unaffordable to ZESCO.

It is for this reason that there should be public disclosure of all agreements recently signed.

We have noted that ZESCO has signed Power Purchase Agreements for independent power producers to supply it with power.

These include; ACSG Westland (thermal), African GreenCo Group, United Arab Emirate’s SkyPower Global, Integrated Clean Energy Power Company a subsidiary of China Huadian Corporation, and a Nigerian company, Africa Consolidated Services Group (ACSG).

All these deals have been touted to be worth billions of United States Dollars.

The independent power producers have to be paid for the power supplied at whatever costs the Agreement states.

Issued by;
Amb. Emmanuel Mwamba
Chairperson for Information and Publicity,
Member of the Central Committee


  1. Firing people will not fill Kariba Dam. Or replenish water currently being used to run the turbines and keep the economy from further decline. Please focus on solutions, not targeting individuals who have to make difficult decisions every day. The diversification from hydro to solar and other sources should have commenced during the PeeEfu era when this challenge required 12 hours of load shedding. Power generation projects take many months to set up and the failed PeeEfu misleaders who we kicked out clearly had no solutions to the ongoing climate change induced challenges.

    • On this one I disagree this man at zesco is a disaster.
      This is not the first drought this country has experienced but its the worst loadshedding and there is even fear that the entire power system may shut down before we get to the next rainy season.

      How did we get to this position??The man doesn’t listen to advise and is letting down the president.

      Why ddnt we conserve water especially in the kafue reservoirs to spread the

  2. Alaaa! Kwena. Our God the ALMIGHTY Creator of everything that is, is a good and forgiving God. He is the one through HIS only son the LORD JESUS CHRIST forgave those who killed the LORD JESUS CHRIST. So is the Bible scripture that says, we/you can forgive seventy by seventy times (70 X 70 times)

    So we can just forgive this man Emmanuel for always pretending to be all knowingly. I don’t know if he don’t know when his party through senior party officials like Chishimba Kambwili told Zambians when trying to explain to the nation about the issue of load shading and the low levels of water in Kariba Dam. Chishimba Kambwili and other PF senior officials told Zambians through that journalist who asked a question to go and urinate in Kariba Dam in order to make it full to be able to generate power. The issue of how much water in terms of percentage in cubic / millimetres by ZRA was rarely shared to or with Zambians. Y then Emmanuel did not say anything.

    I am not very sure if at all there was no power export agreement between the PF Zambian government through or under ZESCO and other Countries, but if there was any then I am not sure why the issue was handled especially during the period of power outages in the Country if all those agreements were cancelled but if not I would be happy to hear from Emmanuel how they handled the same issues or situation. But if there’s nothing that will come from him then he is just pylling the sins on himself and if not careful he will end up diminishing his portion of the seventh by seventy (70 X 70 ) forgiveness because what he does and is always doing is more than necessary and unbearable. Lies in the morning, lies in the afternoon and in the evening /night coming out from his hatred and stone heart.

    During all that period, no one from ZESCO was fired by Edgar Changwa Lungu due to the over borrowing by ZESCO, power export and usage of allocated water.

    So the difficult part I have with you sir is now in the CHIWAMINA GALU KULUMA IMBWA OSATI MBUZI KULUMA GALU

  3. Emmanuel Mwamba ought to learn something about politics. His political fire should be directed at fellow politicians and not technocrats who have no political platform to launch an attack from.

  4. The current team is the most professional it’s had in a decade or so, rectifying many years of debt overload, new connections backlog, regular maintenance fixing…etc Let us see how they will do in a normal season, change of hands in a crisis can be costly.


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