By Sierra Ruth Arinaitwe
A team from the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development paid an inspection visit to Isimba Hydro Power Plant, the third largest power plant in the country.
The team, led by Hon Ruth Nankabirwa, the Minister of Energy and Mineral Development (MEMD) and Hon. Opolot Okaasai, the State Minister for Energy, accompanied by officials and engineers from various agencies of the Ministry was on a tour of the electricity supply industry in Uganda.
Upon arrival at Isimba Hydro Power Plant, they were welcomed by a management of Uganda Electricity Generation Company Limited (UEGCL) who are in charge of maintaining and running operations of the plant.
The ministerial team was given a guided tour around the plant during which the UEGCL management engaged with the ministers about the achievements and challenges they face to which Nankabirwa pledged to provide all the necessary support needed to run the plant.
The Isimba Hydroelectric Power Plant (HPP) is located 4km downstream of Simba Falls on the River Nile, and approximately 50km downstream of the Source of the Nile. The Power Plant is about 21km from Kayunga Town as the nearest town and about 65km from Jinja Town.
It has an installed capacity of 183.2 megawatts produced from four vertical turbine-generator units with a capacity of 45.8MW each.
Construction of the plant cost US$566 Million (about UGX2 Trillion) with support from the Government of China, which provided a loan for project costs of 85% through the EXIM Bank while the Government of Uganda financed 15% of the costs.
The plant was officially commissioned by President Yoweri Museveni on 21st March, 2019 and it commenced commercial operations on 30th March, 2019.
Recently, the Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) and UEGCL signed a partnership to package the 183MW Isimba Hydro Power Plant as a tourism product. Construction of the visitors’ center and staff houses are almost complete. Additionally, the Isimba Public Bridge was also constructed to ease transportation across the districts of Kayunga and Kamuli.
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