By Thandie Chadzandiyani
LILONGWE-(MaraviPost)-Minister of Energy Ibrahim Matola says the country needs MK2 billion to replace Electricity Supply Cooperation of Malawi (ESCOM) transformers that have been vandalized.
About 250 transformers have been vandalized that meantime ESCOM resolved in borrowing 150 transformers from MAREP.
Energy Minister Ibrahim Matola told face press on Tuesday, March 15, 2022 that there is continued increase in cases of theft and vandalism of transformers across the country.
Matola disclosed that about five ESCOM transformers are lost in a week.
“This is leading to loss of revenue for ESCOM, the public and cropping of their service delivery to establishments such as health and education facilities, businesses as well as households.
“Lack of power supply to hospitals is affecting people on life support machines, water boards cannot supply water as required and small businesses such as maize mill, cannot run properly,” Matola said
Any suspect of vandalism will face the law as he describes the act of vandalizing ESCOM equipment such as generators and cables as equal to economic sabotage.
Matola added, “It is a serious offence, punishable by law, to tamper with ESCOM assets as such malpractices contravene the Electoral Act.
“ESCOM has borrowed 150 transformers from MAREP to cover for the deficit and 250 trading centres ( almost 1 million People) do not have power supply as a result of vandalism”.
However ESCOM have heightened their security mechanism, including continuations of community sensitisation campaign to create awareness on the impact of vandalism and theft to service delivery and how that puts the lives of the perpetrators and the public at risk.
Matola co-hosted the presser along side Information Minister Gospel Kazako.