Saturday, May 8, 2021

Morupule’s problems escalate

Two units at the troubled power station Morupule B have collapsed completely, The Telegraph learnt on Monday
Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) confirmed that as a result it anticipates lengthy load shedding hours.

It is understood that it is almost two months since the said units have collapsed and it is expected that it would take time to restore them.  

BPC spokesperson Spencer Moreri denied allegations that the two units are currently not working saying they have not collapsed.

“It is true that units 1 and 3 are out of order but they have not collapsed completely,” he said.

He said that currently only two units 1 and 4 are producing power adding that unit 1 is producing at full capacity while unit 4 is not “producing at full capacity therefore efforts are being made to restore its full capacity.”

He stated that unit 3 has been removed for repair and it is expected to be restored before month end while unit 2 is expected to be in use sometime around the 20th of this month.

Moreri further stated that the public should anticipate extensive load shedding hours because of the challenges that the power station is facing.

Regarding unit 5 and 6 he said plans are still under way for the construction both two units, said Moreri.
Moreri said that plans are also at an advanced stage to refurbish Morupule and in due course a tender will be awarded to a successful bidder.

He said although the situation is volatile, BPC is doing its level best to put the situation under control.

Botswana Power Corporation Workers Union general secretary Bahithetswe Mantswe said it is unfortunate that the power station is failing.

“One wonders when this will come to an end as the nation is now tired of empty promises that never materialise,” he said.

He said it is not clear if all the four units will ever work at the same time because they are always down and they hardly produce to their full capacity.

He said a lot of money has already been used to repair the plant and yet there is not much to show for it.
“I stand to be corrected but the money that has been spent to repair the plant is slowly and surely nearing the amount of money that the plant was built. The question to ask is if it is cost effective?” he asked rhetorically.

He said the plant is milking the government too much and something has to be done before it  reaches a boiling point.

 He reiterated that his Union has long said that the government should reconsider   constructing a new power plant probably at Mmamabula and the tender should be awarded to a credible bidder.

“I think it is high time that we introspect and assess the plant as a whole and all the stakeholders should also be invited to take part in the discussions.”

RELATED STORIES

Read this week's paper