- Tanzania Electric Supply Company has shocked Tanzanians when it unveiled a power rationing schedule of up to 10 hours a day blaming it on chemical problems at Songas, one of its major power plants.
Giant state-run firm issued a press release saying it would start switching off power in some regions for some hours after three power generating machines at Songas plant developed mechanical problems.
Statement signed by company's communication manager, Badra Masoud, said power would be disconnected in those regions between midday and 11pm.
Tanesco public relations manager Badra Masoud said in statement that Mwanza, Mbeya, Moshi, Arusha, Shinyanga, Morogoro and Tanga would today be without power for 10 hours.
Energy and Minerals minister William Ngeleja said measures had been taken to mitigate effects of loss of 100MW from national grid following Songas breakdown.
Mr Ngeleja said US-based General Electric Company (GEC) experts had arrived in the country to examine three turbines that failed earlier this week.
Minister also said Tanesco technicians discovered that Songas' turbines were faulty during a routine checkup, but added that further inspection showed that they could be repaired within a relatively short time.
As Mr Ngeleja gave assurance, Tanesco management was holed up in a crisis meeting the whole day yesterday. Officials said meeting was exploring means of lessening the crisis, but no word had been communicated about its outcome.
"Electricity cutbacks will not affect the main Muhimbili National Hospital, Bank of Tanzania's headquarters or any major industrial areas," Tanesco said yesterday in a statement.
Tanzania is not at risk of an energy crisis similar to 2006, when drought curbed hydropower generation, resulting in widespread blackouts, Prime Minister Mizengo Pinda said today.
"A technical issue is very different from a drought. It's not a big issue at the moment," Mr Pinda told reporters in Dar es Salaam.
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