Power and Politics

Socialist party urges alternatives to electricity load shedding


Government should immediately start power imports and invest in alternative energy sources to avoid load shedding.

This recommendation was made by Socialist Party (SP) Director of Research, Lawrence Mwelwa, in statement on Saturday.

Mwelwa said it was clear that life was getting harder by the day of which load shedding would increase the burden on families.

He called attention to the Jesuit Centre for Theological Reflection (JCTR) which recently noted an increase in the cost of living from K9,600 to K10, 500 for a family of six per month.

Mwelwa said K10, 500 was far too high as most Zambians get little money.

“If the cost of living has gone to K10 500 per month, that is becoming almost unbearable,” he said.

Mwelwa expressed concern that ZESCO had also announced the new tariffs that would further impact negatively on families that were struggling to make ends meet.

Read more: Manufacturers ask govt to suspend electricity exports, as load shedding persists

“Families are already struggling to have three meals per day including those that earn reasonably are finding it very difficult to survive at the current economic circumstances,” he said.

Mwelwa found it unreasonable for ZESCO and the Energy Regulation Board (ERB) to have decided to increase the tariffs at a time of difficulty.

He said the cost of living would go up because of the extended loadshedding that was anticipated as this would result in other unplanned expenses such as buying charcoal which would negatively impact on the families in Zambia.

“Government must be considerate to make decisions such as the increase in electricity tariffs.Loadshedding will have an impact on deforestation. This is because when people cannot afford to pay for electricity then they will resort to charcoal which will make the climate change situation worse,” he said.

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