Little water in dams causes insufficient electricity, REGIDESO says

The water level of Rwegura hydroelectric dam was 12m high but has decreased by 9.56m now

The water level of Rwegura hydroelectric dam was 12m high but has decreased by 9.56m now

“We have just spent almost four days without electricity in our neighborhood especially during day time, and when it is provided, it’s just for 30minutes or one hour”, said a welder met in Bwiza neighborhood of Mukaza commune in the capital Bujumbura.

The electricity shortage mostly affects vendors of products which require electric power to remain in good conditions. “I have lost 140 kilos of fish because of the lack of electricity for two days”, said a fishmonger in the same neighborhood.

The Burundian company in charge of distributing water and electricity-REGIDESO, says the scarcity of electricity is due to the absence of rain. Jeroboam Nzikobanyanka, Managing Director of Regideso, says the water level in Rwegura dam in Kayanza Province has decreased dramatically. “It was 12m high before but it has fallen by 9.56m now, the reason why the electric production has gone down from 18MW to 4MW”, he said.

All hydroelectric power plants in the country suffer a long dry season which is the cause of the shortage of water in the dams. Over 90% of the needed electricity in the whole country is provided by hydroelectric plants. The government is trying other sources. “Since 1986, no any other hydroelectric plant has been constructed; the Minister of Energy inaugurated a new solar station which will start providing electricity soon. We hope that Mubuga and Bubanza solar plants will supply electricity in one year. The one in Bubanza will produce 10MW”, said Mr. Nzikobanyanka

The government has already created partnership with those who can use thermal stations.

REGIDESO has decided to stop distributing electricity from 10pm every day, in order to save for the next day.

“Selective power cut will not be communicated to people to prevent wrongdoers from committing crimes in the dark”, says REGIDESO Managing Director.