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Zimbabwe's Power Utility Cuts Off Electricity to Ministers in Arrears on Bills

  • Gibbs Dube

Sources Local Government Minister Ignatius Chombo, Manicaland Governor Christopher Mushowe and Energy Permanent Secretary Justin Mupamanga owe a combined $378,000 to the Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority

The Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority has cut off power to three Cabinet ministers, a number of senior government officials and some lawmakers who have failed to pay bills exceeding US$100,000 going back to 2009, the state-run utility said Wednesday.

ZESA management and Energy Minister Elton Mangoma declined to release the names of the officials, citing client protection regulations.

But sources said they include Local Government Minister Ignatius Chombo, Manicaland Governor Christopher Mushowe and Energy Permanent Secretary Justin Mupamanga. The sources said they owe ZESA a total of US$378,000.

None of them could be reached for comment.

ZESA spokesman Fullard Gwasira said power is being cut off to all defaulters to recover US$450 million owed by consumers and businesses. “We are switching off power supplies to everyone including Zimbabwe’s top politicians,” Gwasira said.

ZESA owes creditors including international banks, local authorities, suppliers of spare parts and a Mozambican power station at least US$800 million.

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