Wednesday, July 17, 2024

BPC finds German ‘broom’ to sweep away its mess

Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) Board of Directors has appointed Dr Stephan Schwarzfischer as the substantive Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

Sunday Standard can reveal that Schwarzfischer, a German national, will soon be officially named the new CEO after work and resident permits are approved to replace outgoing Jacob Raleru.

BPC Board of Directors Chairman Sebetlela Sebetlela confirmed the appointment of Schwarzfischer, adding that the handover will happen on November 1, 2016.

“The appointment of a new CEO for BPC is part of the transformation strategy that has been launched to turn around the business operations of the corporation,” Sebetlela said.

Sebetlela said the corporation looked for Raleru’s replacement locally and internationally and Schwarzfischer was identified as the suitable candidate.

The new CEO joins the corporation at a time when it is undergoing an internal restructuring exercise which commenced in 2015 meant to improve efficiency and productivity.

Schwarzfischer is going to inherit a troubled multi-billion Pula Morupule B power project, among others. Government has already spent P11 billion on the project that initially went for tender at P7 billion and is currently spending more money on it thought it has never been fully functional and has been experiencing breakdowns.

CNEEC, a Chinese company that is eyeing to take over the power station, recently said that BPC’s lack of expertise and management in dealing with contractors involved has considerably led to the acute power shortages frequently experienced nationally.

Recently the corporation management team appeared before the Parliamentary Committee on Statutory Bodies and revealed that government ministries owed a whopping P90 million for the power services rendered.  Also under the spotlight during the proceedings was the BPC’s subsidy on power charges with the committee wondering why the corporation was operating at a loss despite enjoying monopoly in the industry.

Sunday Standard is also reliably informed that the BPC top post currently does not have anybody deputising and is likely to get two deputy CEOs to assist him in the new structure.


Read this week's paper