Zimbabwe has challenged Southern African Power Pool (SAPP) to address the situation of low rainfall in the Zambezi basin, impact of Cyclone Idai in order for affected countries to return to normalcy.
The SAPP was created in August 1995 at the SADC summit held in Kempton Park, South Africa, when member governments of SADC (excluding Mauritius) signed an Inter-Governmental Memorandum of Understanding for the formation of an electricity power pool in the region under the name of the Southern African Power Pool.
The ministers responsible for energy in the SADC region signed the Revised Inter-Governmental Memorandum of Understanding on 23 February 2006.
The call was made by Energy and Power Development Minister Jorum Gumbo in a speech read on his behalf by Deputy Minister Magna Mudyiwa at the 46th Southern African Power Pool (SAPP) Executive Committee Meeting in Harare.
“Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe have been severely affected by Cyclone Idai, resulting in injury and loss of life as well as to loss and destruction of infrastructure.
“The electrical infrastructure was not spared and I am advised in Mozambique, the Songo –Appollo HVDC line was affected when a tower collapsed. In the eastern parts of Zimbabwe, power lines and associated secondary substations were completely swept away.
“I challenge you to collectively address the situation of law rainfall in the Zambezi basin, impact of Cyclone Idai and System disturbances so that we return to normalcy where possible and to minimise the impact of such challenges,” Gumbo said.
He acknowledged the strides made by SAAP in fulfilling the SADC objectives in the Energy sector.
“I acknowledge the strides made by SAAP in fulfilling the SADC objectives in the Energy sector. However, despite the achievements, the region continues to operate under a generation supply deficit.
“It is the genuine desire of SADC Ministers of Energy to have the region out of this generation and supply deficit as soon as practically possible,” he said.
Gumbo encouraged SADC member states to prioritise implementation of t projects placed priority lists.
“We take cognizance of various efforts being put by all SADC member states that will result in in around 21,349 MW of new generation capacity being commissioned between 2018 and 2020.
“I am also encouraged by your collective and least cost generation expansion approach in the region and that to this end, you have a SAPP pool plan to guide your generation expansion projects.
“I therefore encourage you all member states to prioritise implementation of the projects that have been placed on our priority lists,” he said.