Church and Society Programmes of the Church of Central Africa Presbyterian (CCAP) of Synod of Livingstonia has warned government it risks losing out on revenue if the current power interruptions continue.
The society says the country already has a limited revenue base, hence persistent power interruptions would hurt the economy as factories will not generate enough profits to remit taxes to government.
Moses Mkandawire, the society’s director, was speaking recently in Mzuzu during the third round of pre-budget consultation meetings for the 2018-2019 fiscal year.
“We are already complaining that our revenue base is not diversified enough to cater for the year, and when we continue to experience these blackouts, it means companies are not working, hence cannot produce goods, resulting in less revenue remitted to government through taxes,” he said.
Mkandawire then challenged the newly established Electricity Generation Company (Egenco) to sort out the persistent electricity blackouts once and for all.
He said Malawians are keeping their fingers crossed following installation of the much-touted generators that Egenco claimed had the capacity to reduce load shedding to about six hours per day.
“Malawians were duly promised that once the generators are functional, power interruptions would be history, but this is contrary to what is happening now where we have blackouts almost countrywide,” he said.
Egenco has attributed power supply interruptions to limited flow of water at Kamuzu Barrage on the Shire River in Liwonde.
Egenco senior public relations officer Moses Gwaza said the company recently applied to the Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development for increased water flow to cater for the demand.
“I am pleased that we have obtained an approval to increase the flow to 120 cubic metres per second. With the increased water flow, we expect to have normal power supply with reduced load shedding schedules,” he said. n