JINJA - Power Station Suffers Fault, Shuts

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July 31, 2000 09:11:32

Jinja Power Station Suffers Fault, Shuts

By Daniel K. Kalinaki

A technical fault at Nalubale Hydro Electric Power Station in Jinja, on the night of July 29, caused a blackout across the country and in neighbouring Kenya, where Uganda exports power.

Reports from Nairobi indicate that there was a brief power outage at about 2:00 am. An hour later, there was a power outage in some parts of Uganda, including sections of Kampala.

Minister of State for Energy, Capt. Francis Babu, confirmed that there was a problem at the power station in Jinja.

"I called them last night (dawn on Sunday) and they said there was a problem at the dam," Babu told The Monitor on phone yesterday. He said officers at the power station in Jinja had promised to give him a report about the fault today.

This is the second massive power fault in just over a week. On July 22, a pylon on the main power line from Uganda to Kenya collapsed in a swamp in Bugiri, a town in Eastern Uganda, throwing Nairobi and other Kenyan towns into darkness.

Uganda annually exports 80 MW of hydro electric power to Kenya. Uganda Electricity Board (UEB) spokesman, Dickson Okumu, told The Monitor on phone yesterday that he was out of town and could not comment on the matter.

The manager in charge of distribution at UEB, Mrs. Sekamatte, told The Monitor she was not aware of the power outage, and promised to shed more light on the situation today.

A worker in the control room at the power station in Jinja declined to give details on the matter, but said there had been a problem, which forced staff to switch off the power.


-- (Dee360Degree@aol.com), July 31, 2000

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