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Friday, 21 August 2009

Parastatal Madness, 7th Edition

An update to the 6th Edition. ZESCO has refused to bow down to Lameck Mangani :

ZESCO disconnects electricity power to police houses in Itezhi-Tezhi

Itezhi-Tezhi 20th August, 2009, ZANIS - Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO) Limited in Itezhi-tezhi has not restored power to the police camp regardless of the assurance given by Home Affairs Minister Lameck Mangani that government would soon settle the bill.

In another development police officers in Itezhi-tezhi have welcomed government's decision to start paying police officers allowances for settling their electricity and water bills, saying the move was long over due.

A check by ZANIS at the police camps in Itezhi-tezhi found that electricity supply at the camp was still disconnected after home affairs minister Lameck Mangani requested the company to restore power and water at the police camp on Monday, 17th AUGUST, 2009.

And Police officers interviewed by ZANIS said the move by the Ministry of Home Affairs to start paying them allowances for utilities was welcome, as it will save them from embarrassment and inconvenience each time there were disconnections of electricity and water supply.

"The government's move to pay us allowances for electricity and water is the best that they have done because now we will be able to settle our utility bills on time and avoid embarrassments associated with power and water disconnections" said one police officer who sought anonymity

The police officers wondered why ZESCO in Itezhi-tezhi could not restore power in their homes for close to a month now despite the minister's plea to restore power after assuring them that government would soon settle the huge electricity bill owed to the utility company.

"Our friends in the Copperbelt and Lusaka had their power and water restored after the minister requested them to do so but we are still wondering why zesco in Itezhi-tezhi cannot do so here" said one of the police officers.

When contacted for a comment ZESCO referred all queries to their superior offices in choma.

On Monday this week government announced that police officers will from next year directly pay police officers allowances for the settlement of their electricity and water bills to save them from being disconnected from water and electricity supply.

Home Affairs Minister Lameck Mangani was reported as saying the move to pay utility allowances to police officers would be introduced in the next budget and that it was aimed at ensuring that police officers took the responsibility of paying for their bills instead of being inconvenienced over long-standing government bills.

Mr. Mangani further said the Home Affairs Ministry had entered into an agreement with the utility companies to re-connect water and electricity power to the affected police camp.

Meanwhile ZESCO in Itezhi-tezhi has postponed the planned mass disconnetions of power supply to defaulting government ministries and house tenants due to lack of police manpower to help in the exercise. Acting Itezhi-tezhi District Commissioner Hampende Hichilema confirmed the postponement to ZANIS today.

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