City furniture dealers lose millions, thanks to power blackout

A local timber and furniture co-operative in Gisozi, Kigali has lost an estimated Rwf15m in revenue after experiencing a three-day power blackout.

A local timber and furniture co-operative in Gisozi, Kigali has lost an estimated Rwf15m in revenue after experiencing a three-day power blackout.

Justin Gashayija, the president of Adarwa Co-operative Society, said the blackout started at midday on Tuesday. The society is made up of 157 small groups.

“We are not sure when the power would be restored. Most of our clients who had made orders are disappointed because we failed to beat deadlines. Besides, the work of over 3,000 people who are employed directly or indirectly by the co-operative is on standstill,” he said.

“I talked to the EWSA management here and they told me that the outage was a ‘highly’ technical emergency problem that needed time to correct. They promised to fix by 2:00pm today (yesterday).”

Gashayija, however, noted that this was the first time the area was experiencing such a prolonged blackout.

The Energy, Water and Sanitation Authority (EWSA) is responsible for power distribution and line maintenance.

EWSA has blamed the outage to vandals. “The blackout the area is experiencing came after the power line that connects from Gikondo to Gisozi was vandalised by unknown people,” noted Jackie Nyiranziza, the EWSA field technical operator for Kacyiru.

“Because this emergency requires a lot of time and high technical effort to sort it out, we can’t be sure of the particular time we will complete it,” she said yesterday.

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