Copperbelt Energy Corporation (CEC) has launched its extended 34 megawatts solar project at a cost of US$22 million.
President Hakainde Hichilema who officiated at the launch in Kitwe on Wednesday said the solar project would enhance the country’s power generation capacity.
President Hichilema said the country looks at doubling the current 3,500 MW in the next five years and become a net exporter of power in the region.
He said going forward, the private sector would be key in achieving the target milestones, adding that the private sector should partner with ZESCO to improve power transmission.
He expressed disappointment that 57 years of independence, the country had only managed 3,500 MW.
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CEC board chairperson London Mwafulilwa said the 34 MW that was launched yesterday was capable of powering a record 10,000 households which he said would go a long way in mitigating a future energy crisis.
“The 34 MW extended solar project will go a long way in resolving any future power challenges that the country may face, the solar plant is capable of serving the electricity needs of more than 10,000 households, with the enabling environment, we will not end, this is just a start,” Mr Mwafulilwa said.
CEC managing director Owen Silavwe said the construction phase created 800 job opportunities as eight Copperbelt University Students (CBU) participated in the project.
Earlier in the day, Hichilema visited CBU where students held a solidarity match to appreciate his government’s decision to reintroduce meal allowance.
He said students should guard against violence and division among people in the country.
CBU students union president Castrol Mulilo and his counterpart at Mukuba university Brian Mwitwa thanked President Hichilema for reinstating the meal allowances.
Mulilo said many students had become destitute due to failure to fend for themselves.
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