The government of Tanzania plans to spend 1.2…

The government of Tanzania plans to spend 1.2 trillion Tanzanian shillings (US$740 million) by the end of next year for emergency power projects aimed at ending chronic energy shortages in east Africa’s second-largest economy.

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Tanesco spends over 5bn/- on subsidies

Each worker given 750 units of power monthly for 3,500/-

Cash-strapped Tanzania Electric Supply Company (Tanesco) spends over 5bn/- per year in subsidizing electricity units for its employees as an incentive, The Guardian has learnt.
A survey conducted by this newspaper has established that every employee at Tanesco receives 750 electricity units worth 3,500/- every month.
This means that a Tanesco employee buys a unit at 4/67 compared to an ordinary consumer who pays between 118/- and 128/- for a unit of power.
Each Tanesco worker is therefore, entitled to 9,000 units of electricity annually at 42,030/- only, while an ordinary consumer pays 1,080,000/- for the same number of units per year.
Sources within the company confirmed to The Guardian that every employee was getting 750 units of electricity monthly at 3,500/-.
“We are given the units as bonuses, but it is limited to one house. If you have other houses, then you have to buy power for them at normal prices,” said one source.
The sources further said that couples working at the company were getting 1,500 units per month.
According to sources, the number of Tanesco employees countrywide was nearly 5,000 by December, last year, each of whom was entitled to the units.
Asked whether or not the 750 power units the company was providing to its employees was part of Tanesco’s policy, the Minister for Energy and Minerals, William Ngeleja advised this reporter to seek the response from Tanesco board chairman, deputy board chairperson or Tanesco CEO.
When contacted, Tanesco Acting Executive Director, Eng. Stephen Mabada declined to comment, only saying: “This is Tanesco’s week. Let’s write what is happening during the week.”
Pressed further, Mabada said: “Just go and write.”
The power utility announced on Monday that its accumulated losses had been reduced from 186bn/- in 2006 to 22bn/- in 2008.
Tanesco has to a large extent continued to rely on subsidy, especially for investment financing, due to prolonged power shedding, which has affected its revenue base.
The company requested the government to provide 312bn/- from its 2009/2010 budget to enable the company implement emergency projects aimed at reducing annoyance to the customers.
In the 2007/2008 financial year, the government announced that it would no longer subsidise the company’s operations, saying it would only guarantee funds Tanesco borrowed from international financial institutions for investment.
The Vice chairperson of the Parliamentary Parastatal Organization Accounts Committee (POAC), Estherine Kilasi (CCM – Mbarali) said her committee was not aware of the matter.
She further said that the committee had gone through the 2008 audited report but the issue was not mentioned at all.
“Maybe they will bring it up next year when we are going through the 2009 audit report, but as of now, we do not know anything,” she said.
She however, said private companies used to audit paratastals and would later send audited reports to the Board of Directors of a responsible institution.
Renatus Mkinga who is Executive Director for Action Development Forward wondered why Tanesco was granting such incentives at a time when it was facing financial problems and not producing surplus electricity.
“I think the initiative was copied from the South African power firm, the Electricity Supply Commission (ESCOM), which provides subsdised units as incentives to its employee from surplus electricity,” said Mkinga.
He noted that for the last 10 to 15 years, the company had been providing its employee with 300 to 400 units, but said raising these to 750 units was unacceptable, especially when the company is struggling financially.

Power generation enhanced by downpours

POWER generation has increased after heavy downpours across the country and reserve capacity of over 80megawatts is anticipated, the Tanzania Electric Supply Company (TANESCO) has said.

The TANESCO Acting Communications Manager, Mr Chabby Barasa told the ‘Sunday News’ today that the report was derived from a recent review conducted between December, last year and early this month.

“There will be no load shedding. The next review is scheduled for tomorrow,” he said.
Mr Barasa added that weekly average available generation is expected to be about 638.5MW against weekly average demand of about 612MW.

According Mr Barasa the utilisation of thermal generation has been reduced following the increase in hydroelectricity.

He however said, “Kihansi 60MW unit 1 is still out of circuit due to a damaged runner and preparations for repairs are in progress. Restoration of the unit is expected by end of next month.”

The news of stable power generations brings hope and buries last year’s experiences, particularly in October, when the company plunged into a power crisis that resulted in a countrywide 14 hour -power cut on a daily basis.

The rationing was largely attributed to the decrease in water levels at the main hydropower plants of Kihansi and Pangani which are now generating a total of 127MW.

Mr Barasa said that from the review SONGAS, average generation was (155MW), IPTL (10MW), Mtera (37MW), Kidatu (115MW), Kihansi (98MW), New Pangani (29MW), Hale and Nyumba ya Mungu (8MW and 3.5MW) respectively, Ubungo Gas Plant (98MW), Tegeta Gas Plant (13MW).

Source: The Daily News, january 9, 2010

Alternative options on card to avert power crisis

THE impact of power shedding is expected to lessen with 30 Megawatt of electricity to be fed into the national grid soon, the Deputy Minister for Energy and Mineral, Mr Adam Malima, has said.

He said the 20MW turbine from the independent power producer, Songas, is expected to be in operation on Friday and Hale turbine producing 10MW is expected to start operating soon.

“In Hale, the engineers were completing minor repairs and were supposed to have completed their work between 15th and 16th of this month,” Mr Malima told ‘Daily News’ by phone yesterday.

Songas experts told the Minister for Energy and Mineral, Mr William Ngeleja, yesterday that the 20MW turbine was undergoing tests before they start generating electricity. The minister was inspecting the Songas turbine which is expected to start working by end of this week.

With the 30MW expected to be loaded to the national grid soon, Tanzania Electric Supply Company (TANESCO) will be facing a deficit of 120MW of electricity, which is expected to be cut further with the 60MW expected between November and December, this year.

“Repairs are going very well, I have been told that the machine has been repaired and is undergoing tests before it starts working on Friday,” Mr Ngeleja explained.

The government, he said, was following closely on repairs of all power generating machines to ensure they are back in operation. With Kihansi turbine that produces 60MW expected to be fully repaired and operating between November and December, power load shedding will ease considerably by 90MW.

“Reports from engineers from Norway and Tanesco say repairs are going very well at Kihansi and we expect the turbines to be generating power between November and December", Mr Ngeleja explained.

He said the government has short, medium and long term plans to ensure power crisis was averted in future. These include purchase of the 160MW power generating machines by Tanesco and use of Independent Power Tanzania Limited (IPTL) electricity generating machines.

Mr Ngeleja did not have the price for the soon to be purchased machines by Tanesco, but said the cost of 1MW was sold for between one million US dollars and 1.5 million US dollars, bringing the total cost for the 160MW machines to 200 million US dollars.

“In the short plans we want to ensure that all power generating machines are back in operation to avert losses the government, private sector and the public is experiencing,” he explained.

Mr Ngeleja said intensive discussion between the government and IPTL were underway to have IPTL generators (capable of producing 60MW) to start producing electricity for the national grid.

The deputy minister, however, could not quantify how much the government and business community was losing. But he said the government was looking at all available option of lessening the power crisis.

“The power crisis is causing a big loss to the nation, let alone the industrial sector. We have to look at all options. IPTL is one of the options which we are looking at,” he explained.

Tanesco Executive Director Dr Idris Rashid was outside Dar es Salaam when contacted for comment.


700bn/- project to end power blues

Tanzania`s power woes may become history following a planned three-year 700bn/- project to connect power from the Mtwara natural gas deposits to the national grid.
This was disclosed by the Minister for Energy and Minerals, William Ngeleja in a telephone interview with the Guardian yesterday. More