The completion of the 600 Karuma Hydro Power Project has been extended by one year. Construction of the $1.4b (sh5.2 trillion) plant was planned for five years. It commenced in December 2013 and completion had been set for December 2018.
The reason for the delay has been attributed to the acquisition of land for the project. This resulted in the slow pace of construction of power transmission lines.
Eng. Margaret Proscovia Njuki, the board chairperson of the Uganda Electricity Generation Company (UEGCL), said the resettlement action plan for people delayed the project. Njuki made the remarks during the board’s quarterly inspection of the project recently.
She said UEGCL has focused on improving project management of the project. She noted that to sustain progress, the contractor has deployed the necessary resources to speed up works in sections of the power house,including equipment installation, surge chamber and the tail race tunnel.
Overall physical progress of the project stands at 84.6%.Power generating units two and three are expected to generate 100MW each by the end of December 2018, out of the six generating units or turbines.
The remaining units will generate power next year following the engineering design. Eng. Harrison Mutikanga, the chief executive officer UEGCL, said the final factory acceptance tests for electro mechanical equipment is ongoing in China, including the last three generator step up transformers.
He explained that this is to ensure quality equipment fit for purpose is procured for the power plant.
“The operation and maintenance team has been undergoing intense training at different supplier factories, as well as taking part in installation activities on site,” he explained.