Former deputy Prime Minister, Professor Arthur Mutambara, has called for the removal of the “incompetent” Indian company contracted to manage works at Hwange thermal power stations.
Speaking during a Public Policy Research Institute of Zimbabwe (PPRIZ) Webinar on the energy crisis in the southern African nation, Mutambara said Water and Power Consultancy Services (WAPCOS) must be removed and work be done by Zimbabwe engineers. He said:
We must carry out the refurbishment of Hwange 1 and 6. They are too old and they’ve not been refurbished. It is a problem because WAPCOS the Indian company is incompetent. It must be removed. There’s a company called WAPCOS, which has got a management agreement to run Hwange 1 and 6, they are incompetent, they are not capable. They must be removed immediately and the job of managing Hwange 1 to 6 must be given to Zimbabwean engineers in the diaspora, in the country and then a plan laid out to refurbish Hwange 1 to 6 using the OEMs, the original equipment manufacturers.
Now that Hwange 1 and 6 refurbishment can solve Zimbabwe’s energy problems. It can be done tomorrow, but WAPCOS must go. They are corrupt and they’re corrupt politicians in Zimbabwe. Hwange 7 and 8 is ready, the synchronization is taking place slowly. There’s a challenge technically on synchronizing Hwange 7 and 8 to the grid. Now, this is a very simple technical problem that engineers can solve, Zimbabwe’s engineers can solve, but the contractor who’s producing, who is working on 7 and 8 might be sabotaging the country because they want to be paid.
He said the technical issues being mentioned are part of sabotage by the contractor to bargain for payment for their projects and their other investments in Zimbabwe.
Mutambara said Zimbabwe’s energy problems will go away if Hwange 7 and 8 come on board.