Home » Business » Zesa to Introduce Power Recharge Cards

Zesa Holdings will introduce recharge cards next month to ease congestion at pre-paid power purchase points, group chief executive Engineer Josh Chifamba has said.

Zimbabwe started rolling out the pre-paid meter system as part of efforts to help manage power consumption amid crippling shortages. The meters will potentially enhance Zesa’s billing system.

The system requires consumers to pay for electricity before consumption, helping the power utility to improve revenue collection which Zesa says is critical for infrastructure maintenance.

Zimbabwe requires about 2 200MW megawatts at peak demand, but is currently only able to generate 1 200MW due to limited capacity. Deficits are covered through rolling power cuts and imports.

“We will introduce the cards on May 19 as we continuously seek to improve service,” Eng Chifamba told journalists at an international business conference at the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair.

He said the national power utility was encountering high incidence of pre-paid meter tampering as consumers attempt to evade paying for power or reduce the cost of their consumption.

However, while Zesa sought to improve revenue inflows, defaults on payments for consumed power, discrepancies of post paid system and tampering has resulted in the fall of revenue.

The prepaid meter system has also been rocked by reports that some of the gadgets are defective, allowing consumers to pay for less than they actually use.

The power utility recently said it was owed in excess of US$800 million by both industrial and domestic consumers as of November 2013.

Zesa said in February it was targeting to have installed 500 000 prepaid meters by the end of March and 800 000 by November this year.

Source : The Herald