CHIMWEMWE MWALE and JACK ZIMBA, Livingstone
THE best four contractors in the world have been selected to bid for the US$120 million rehabilitation works of the spillway at Kariba Dam, says Zambezi River Authority (ZRA) chief executive Munyaradzi Munodawafa.
The spillway rehabilitation is part of the wholesome refurbishment of the Kariba Dam, which will cost US$294 million.
Mr Munodawafa said the four shortlisted companies will be provided with the appropriate documentation to enable them to bid for the multi-million project.
He said during a media interaction forum on Wednesday that the process will be completed in 2018 and that the contractor will begin works in 2019.
Mr Munodawafa said the four companies were selected because they have the highest technicality to provide for the successful undertaking of the project.
He said the original design of the project was initially going to take 10 years but has been reduced to six years because of the extensive preparatory works the authority has undertaken in the past two years.
And Mr Munodawafa said ZRA will conclude the environmental impact assessment and studies of the Batoka Gorge project by 2018.
Mr Mun o d awaf a s a i d agreements about limiting the gorge height have been made “so that we do not jeorpardise the Victoria Falls because the higher the height the more electricity [megawatts] we can generate”.
He said ZRA will carry out mobilisation after studies are conducted and that the African Union (AU) has directed Zambia and Zimbabwe to ensure that the African Development Bank (AfDB), which is one of the financiers of the project, takes a leading role of the financial aspect.
The Batoka Gorge Power Project is expected to cost about US$4 billion.
Meanwhile, Mr Munodawafa said ZRA will have a road map for the development of the Devil’s Gorge whose preliminary capacity for electricity generation is 1,100 megawatts.