Malawi: U.S. Survey Hits At Political Interference for Escom, Egenco Inefficiencies

20 March 2018

US sponsored survey has revealed that state electricity companies, Escom and Egenco are inefficient in their operations because of political interferences.

Grace Simwaka, head of energy sector reforms at Millennium Challenge Account (MCA) has told journalists in Lilongwe that the two companies can only operate effectively and efficiently if their boards are hired on merit.

The law allows the President to appoint anyone, including party supporters and sympathisers to the board of the statutory corporations.

"We have talked to the authorities on how best to make Escom and Egenco independent so that they are efficient and effective," said Simwaka.

The survey results come at a time when the country is facing severe power cuts despite the fact that this is a rainy season.

Escom and Egenco officials say the situation has been worsened by the fact that the south has been without rains for weeks.

The officials however say the government has now allowed to increase the water flow at Liwonde Barrage by 20 per cent, saying this would improve the situation.

Escom public relations officer George Mituka said the load shedding for ordinary homes will be reduced to four hours a day whilst for industrial sites will be restricted for one day in a week.

Principal Secretary for the Department of Water Nyandule Phiri confirmed the government has nodded to the increase of water flow by 20 per cent to allow the generation of the hydro power.

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