Electricity blackouts annoy farmers

FARMERS in Lusaka West have protested the continued power blackouts that have resulted in severe lose to produce.

The farmers have complained that blackouts that have lasted for days on ends have crippled irrigation and conservation activities resulting in the loss of fresh produce and drying up of orchards and vegetable gardens.

“There is no explanation from ZESCO why we have these blackouts except for the regular text messages indicating a problem with one of their transformers,” said retired pilot Captain Bryll Mulangala.

He disclosed that his biltong business had suffered because the dryer was constantly off and the orchard was drying up because there was no power to run the irrigation equipment.

This situation, he said, was also affecting households because they did not have water for domestic use.

“The erratic supply of electricity is a grave danger to our farming effort and unfortunately ZESCO has made no effort to explain the current situation, a situation that would have enabled us to make contingency arrangements,” he said.

He appealed to ZESCO to rectify whatever fault had arisen and ensure that power was restored as quickly as possible.

And another farmer Kapenda Mvula complained that the power cuts were a mockery of the famous ZESCO improvement slogans.

“They keep boasting of improved power supply and yet productive consumers are being denied service without any proper explanation.

We would like the government to investigate this matter and get to the bottom of it, if they have failed to run ZESCO let them resign to allow more competent people to manage the utility,” he said.