ZESA DEMANDS $US5 MILLION FROM CHIVAYO
The Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority Holdings (Zesa) board will meet next week to deliberate on energy contracts awarded to dodgy businessman Wicknell Chivayo (pictured) amid reports parliament will soon move a motion requesting the Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC) to cancel energy deals that were awarded to his Intratrek company, the Zimbabwe Independent has heard.
This comes at a time ZPC is moving to mobilise resources for the project as announced by Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa during his 2018 budget presentation in parliament yesterday.
Furthermore implementation of the Gwanda Solar Energy Project will commence in 2018,following the granting of incentives to the ZPC to enable it to mobilise funding from the market. At least USS66.7 million will be mobilised during 2018, focusing on construction of a 25MW solar plant under Phase 1 of the project,”
Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa said.
Chivayo was awarded the USS200 million Gwanda solar project, the USS73 million refurbishment of the Harare Power Station, a US$163 nillion project to restore Munyati Power station as well as the USS248 million Gairezi Project, but has failed to deliver.
The Energy ministry in October ordered ZPC to subcontract the Gwanda project after lntratrek failed to implement the controversial deal, despite receiving a USS5 million advance payment without a bank guarantee — against the standing rules.
ZPC wants the USS5 million back. The Gwanda Project is part of three controversial solar projects, each generating 100 megawatts, which were approved by
government. The initial cost. as of 2014. was USS183 million for each of the projects, bringing the total cost to US$549 million. Soon after being awarded the tenders, the winning companies demanded price escalations, resulting in the projects ballooning to a total cost of US$720 million.
In an interview this week, the Zesa group Chief( executive officer Josh Chifamba said his organisation will meet next Friday to deliberate on Chivayo’s deals. “The board is meeting next week and top of the agenda are the Chivhayo deals.” Chifamba said.
“The tender process was above it board but we are not happy with the way the former minister (Samuel Undenge) pushed for the advance payment of US$5 million without a bank guarantee.”
Investigations by this newspaper revealed that despite being given an advance payment of US$5 million, Chivayo did not commence any work at his Gwanda solar project site. Parliamentary sources this week said a motion will soon be moved to direct ZPC to cancel the deals controversially awarded to Chivayo. Parliamentarians will also request that he pay back the USSS million he was paid in advance without a bank gurantee;
We will summon ZPC to parliament so that they explain how they issued Chivayo the energy contracts and also urge the company to make sure that Chivayo pays back the $5 Million,” said the legislator
Chivayo was paid $5 Million before commencing work at the behest of Undenge, despite falling to do any meaningful work on site.
A year after winning the million dollar tender and despite getting the payment for pre-commencement works, Intratrek “Zimbabwe ) abandoned the project site after only months’ work, it has emerged.