President Museveni and President Suluhu Commission 14MW Kikagati-Murongo Hydropower Plant in Isingiro

The Kikagati-Murongo Hydropower Plant in Isingiro district has been officially opened by President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni and his Tanzanian counterpart, H.E. Samia Suluhu Hassan. “We need cheap electricity to get out of poverty,” President Museveni.


“We need cheap electricity to get out of poverty,” President Museveni.

The Kikagati-Murongo Hydropower Plant in Isingiro district has been officially opened by President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni and his Tanzanian counterpart, H.E. Samia Suluhu Hassan.

The greatest tributary of Lake Victoria and the natural border between Tanzania and Uganda, the Kagera River, is where the 14 Megawatt cross-border dam is situated.

President Museveni welcomed Her Excellency Samia Suluhu Hassan to the western region of Uganda to commission a project on the River Kagera that will benefit the two sister nations in a speech at the event immediately after commissioning today.

President Museveni said, “It’s excellent that we’re starting to utilise the potential of the Kagera River, and 11 kilometers downstream lies Nshungezi, where there are 38 megawatts to help both Uganda, Rwanda, and Tanzania.

President Museveni and President Suhulu of Tanzania jointly commissioning the Kikagati-Murongo Hydropower Plant | PPU

“It’s a big honour to have President Samia Suluhu Hassan come here for the first time in this area. You have been to other parts of Uganda, but you hadn’t come here. We are very lucky, and I welcome you here,” President Museveni said.

Consumers will be required to pay US Cents 8.5 per kilowatt hour for the electricity produced by the plant, which was created by Kikagati Power Company Limited (KPCL). President Museveni argued that the price is too high for it to fulfill its intended function and urged the developers to lower it so that more people might escape poverty.

“This price of 8.5 cents per unit is not a Christian idea because we’re insisting that power, especially for manufacturing, should be about 5 cents,” said H.E. Museveni, citing dams like Karuma and Isimba, where the production cost is 4.8 cents per unit, and Bujagaali, which started at 13 cents and has since dropped to 8.3 cents per unit.

“We require inexpensive electricity, particularly for manufacturing. We cannot afford expensive electricity and then expect us to escape poverty, H.E. Museveni continued.
He told the crowd that Uganda is able to produce power at 4.7 or 4.8 cents per unit thanks to Chinese financing, “and our own dams where we already paid the debts, we’re able to have power at 1.2 cents per unit.”

President Museveni and President Suhulu inspecting Kikagati-Murongo Hydropower Plant on May 25, 2023 | PPU

The project’s developers, Berkeley Energy, claim that the Bilateral Agreement stipulates that the power produced by the project will be split equally between the two nations. To meet the reduced energy demand in the Northwestern region of Tanzania, it was agreed by the two countries that Tanzania would absorb 2.5MW in the first three years following the date of commissioning (or around 35% of the power generated). The idea of power sharing, however, did not sit well with President Museveni.

“This argument about who takes more power, I’m not part of that argument. If Tanzania needs the power more, they take it provided they pay for it, what’s the problem? If they wanted 2 megawatts originally and now, they want 4, they should get the 4. I am authorizing it here now! If they want all the 14, they should take but they pay, what’s the problem?” President Museveni wondered, adding that Uganda is already exporting power from Masaka to Bukoba.

President Museveni welcoming President Samia Suluhu of the Republic of Tanzania in Isingiro district, Uganda. | PPU

The President of the United Republic of Tanzania, H.E. Suluhu, thanked President Museveni on her behalf for the invitation to commission a power plant, which will significantly reinforce the long-standing and kinship ties between the two nations and are advancing daily.

“Frankly speaking, I applaud your vision to inaugurate this project and see to it that it is accomplished. I have had a chance to visit the project and it is really well done. Congratulations and thank

you so much,” H.E Suluhu said, adding that the power plant will improve a lot of things including; trading and investment, transportation of people and goods, social services, clean and safe water and education.
“The power is going to improve security in our area because it is going to bridge the inequality and the communication gap between the urban and rural settings,” President Suluhu said.

Both countries’ energy ministers, Mr. January Makamba of Tanzania and Ms. Ruth Nankabirwa of Uganda, spoke at the occasion as well. They praised the two Presidents for their effective management in seeing that the project was effectively completed. They promised to make sure that more projects, including the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP), the Masaka Mwanza transmission line, and a gas pipeline project, among others, are successfully finished.

“We know that they’re important to you, our countries and our people,” Minister January Makamba said.

The project, which spans borders, is in line with the East African Community Vision 2050 and Article 101 of the Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community, which the Partner States agreed to, among other things, to cooperate in the exploitation of renewable energy resources to supply their populations with affordable energy.

Security authorities, Isingiro district leaders, and representatives from the two countries’ ministries also attended the occasion.

President Museveni and President Suhulu at Kikagati-Murongo Hydropower Plant Commissioning May 2023 | PPU