Robert Nsabiyumva, a welder along Chuho road in Kisoro Municipality, says the persistent power outages are crippling his business. According to Nsabiyunva, he is unable to beat deadlines because of the power outages, which affects his earnings.
Power consumers in Kisoro district are protesting the persistent power outages over the last two years. They claim that power always goes off between 9am and 6pm. The situation is worse on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, according to power consumers.
The most affected are hotel owners, welders and Kisoro Hospital. Due to the power outages, most businesses are forced to run generators, which they find costly. Robert Nsabiyumva, a welder along Chuho road in Kisoro Municipality, says the persistent power outages are crippling his business.
According to Nsabiyunva, he is unable to beat deadlines because of the power outages, which affects his earnings. Nsabiyinva says he is considering joining another business that isn't dependent on electricity, although welding is more profitable. He faults Umeme for failing to address the power outages despite collecting huge sums of money from power users.
Julius Muhire operates a saloon along Mutanda road in Kisoro Municipality. Muhire says he is forced to operate on generator to power his saloon because of the outages.
He however, says he finds it is becoming too expensive for him to keep the generator running as it eats the little profits he makes. According to Muhire, at times he is forced to turn away customers due to lack of electricity because he can't afford to run on a generator the entire day. He says he only uses the generator during peak hours in the evening.
Dr. Michael Baganizi, the Kisoro Hospital Medical Superintendent, says the power outages have impacted negatively on service delivery at the hospital.
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Fidelis Kanyamunyu, the Director of Wagtail Eco Safari Camp in Rubuguri town board, says he is finding it hard to keep his drinks cold, which has cost him a lot of customers. He also explains that he loses food in the fridge whenever power goes off because he can't run the generator all the time due to the costs involved and noise pollution.
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Johnson Mwase, the UMEME Operations Engineer Kabale and Kisoro area refutes the complaints of persistent power outages. Mwase says the small cases of power outages are caused by small technical problems, which are always fixed in a very short time.