Electricity Ministry says situation stable despite increase in power outages
The Minister of Electricity and Energy Ahmed Emam - YOUM7 (Archive)

CAIRO: Although the Ministry of Electricity recently said that continuous power outages would subside, several governorates are witnessing increase in the power outages that last for hours.

During the past couple of months, power outages have increased in several governorates, which caused residents to threaten not to pay electricity bills.

A number of campaigns on Facebook called on people to not pay their electricity bills in protest.

According to Al-Mashhad website, several residents of Fayoum threatened on Tuesday to not pay their electricity bills as the power is cut daily from 6 to 7 times.

According to Youm7, Beheira residents have accused electricity plant officials of inefficiently in implementing the plan to reduce the load by housing units.

Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab held an urgent meeting on Tuesday to discuss power outages during the past period, and the way in which the problem could be solved, reported Youm7.

The minister of petroleum, the minister of electricity and executive representatives of both ministries attended the meeting.

During the meeting, the prime minister discussed a report presented by the ministries of petroleum and electricity regarding the reasons that led to the power cuts during the past two weeks especially Monday.

The report said the maintenance of several power generators led to a decrease in electricity and fuel due to logistical problems related to transportation, which caused the outages.

The report added that the situation was getting better due to the Abu Qeer power plant coming back to service after maintenance that increased its capacity to 500 megawatts, an increase in the supply of fuel oil and diesel, in addition to increasing the power generated from the High Dam after coordination between the Ministry of Electricity and Irrigation.

Since the summer of 2012, power outages have increased during Mohamed Morsi’s presidency receiving widespread criticism. There had been claims that the government of Hisham Qandil was smuggling electricity to Gaza.

There had been concerns that by summer 2014, the power outages would.

“We ask the new government to find solutions to the crisis because the Egyptian people are not able to bear anymore problems,” 40-year-old teacher Rasha Magdi told The Cairo Post March, fearing that power outages would continue to increase.

The lack of fuel is the main reason behind the power outages, Hafez Salmawy, head of the Egyptian Electric Utility and Consumer Protection Regulatory Agency, told The Cairo Post in March.

The coming summer will witness “one of the worst fuel and energy shortages in Egypt” given the decline of energy production, while consumption rates increase dramatically, an official source told Youm7 February.

Additionally reporting Hend Mokhtar.

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