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Industries to get power by September – minister

ENERGY Minister Dr Medard Kalemani has revealed that all local industries, medium and large, including Biharamulo Stamigold (BGM) would get reliable electricity supply by September 30, this year.

“The Fifth Phase government under President John Magufuli is determined to attain industrial economy status by 2025 through an agricultural revolution. “Electricity power is a catapult that Tanzanians should utilize by establishing medium and large industries. The government is keen to ensure that by September 30, this year all industries are connected to the national grid and get reliable electricity,” he said.

Dr Kalemani, who toured the Biharamulo Stamigold on Monday, noted that the government had already set aside about 9.5bn/- for the project, also noting that Tanzania had 278 medium and large industries.

He directed the Tanzania Electric Supply Company (Tanesco) to work day and night and ensure that the project is completed before the projected deadline.

Earlier, Biharamulo Stamigold Acting General Manager, Engineer Rashid Lulanga, informed Dr Kalemani that the gold mine was spending almost 1bn/- every month on buying diesel for running the eight generators.

“After getting reliable electricity, the gold mine would increase production and cut down operational costs by at least 700m/- every month while also increasing job opportunities and paying more dividend to the government,” he said.

Dr Kalemani was visibly delighted by the efforts and directed the management to cooperate with Tanesco to ensure that the mine gets electricity come September 30, promising to inaugurate the project himself.

“The government was committed to ensure that most Tanzanians benefited from its vast natural resources. I can proudly announce that within a short period most villages in Kagera Region will be connected to the national grid. Transmission lines from the national grid had so far been extended to Nyakanazi and Itako, and from there they would be extended to other parts of the region, including Muleba, Bukoba Rural and Missenyi districts,” he said.

Dr Kalemani expressed satisfaction over the implementation of the Regional Rusumo Falls Hydroelectric project (RRFHP) that will enhance regional cooperation, support sustainable management of the Kagera River Basin, promote growth and poverty reduction and also manage environmental aspects.

The project will address the acute shortage of electricity experienced by the three countries, which negatively affect their economies.

Once operational, the project will generate 80 MW of renewable clean energy, relatively low cost power to the national grids of the three countries shared equally, each of which receives an additional 165 GWH per year, per country.

The additional power will benefit some 1,146,000 people in the three countries- 520,000 in Burundi (5.4 per cent), 159,000 in Tanzania (0.34 per cent) and 467,000 in Rwanda (4 per cent).

He assured Tanzanians that efforts were in final stages to link more areas to the national grid, adding that such efforts had yielded fruits by extending the national grid to Bulyankulu-Geita and Kigoma-Nyakanazi.

“All the projects are being undertaken by Tanzania Electric Supply Company (Tanesco) as it has the capacity to complete the works. We will not be hiring other contractors,” he said.

Construction of the power generation plant is financed by the World Bank while the transmission lines that will connect the power plant to the national grids in the three countries will be financed by the African Development Bank (AfDB).

The Rusumo Power Plant is implemented by the Nile Equatorial Lakes Subsidiary Action Programme Coordination Unit (NELSAP-CU) mandated by the three countries through the Rusumo Power Company Ltd (RPCL).

Upon completion, the project will enhance socioeconomic growth, reinforce regional cooperation, partnership and peace within the Kagera River Basin countries.

THE Southern African Development ...

Author: MEDDY MULISA in Bukoba

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