Ethiopian Electric Power Corporation Divided into Two

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Ethiopia’s Electric Light and Power Corporation (EEPCO) has been officially renamed and split into two corporate entities, reportedly to facilitate the firm’s plans of rapid expansion as Ethiopia increases its electrical power generation capacity.

Prior to this revelation a few weeks ago, there had been several rumours that the corporation would be divided.

The Minister of Information and Communication Technology, Dr. Debretsion Gebremichael recently confirmed that indeed the company had been split into two. According to him, the company has been divided into the Ethiopian Electric Power Office (EEPO) and the Ethiopian Electric Services Office (EESO).  Earlier, the corporation is reported to have been undergoing  a research aimed at improving the quality of its service delivery.

Dr. Debretsion said the corporation’s employees had also been divided into three groups. He stressed that at the level of efficiency and effectiveness the corporation is at right now, it will not be able to fulfil the energy production and distribution needs of Ethiopia. He reasoned that there was no other way to deal with the inefficiency and ineffectiveness of the corporation besides dividing it.

The company’s employees were reportedly given a video conference prior to the division of the corporation, according to a report by Addis Guday, a weekly magazine in Addis Ababa.

After the division of the corporation into two, it has been decided that the production of power would be handled by the new Ethiopian Electric Power office, which would be governed by a management team made up entirely of Ethiopians and led by engineer Azeb Asnake, Gibe 3’s dam building project manager and the new general manager appointed in the place of Ato Mihiret Debebe.

Power distribution services will be handled by the Ethiopian Electric Services office, and will be managed by an Indian Company, Power Grid Company, led by its new Chief Executive Officer Mr. Viku Kahru Kahn.

Dr. Debretsion explained that the reason for the displacement of the former general manager Ato Mihiret was his inability to perform up to the required standard.

In answering a question pertaining to the educational status of the engineer and how she was going to handle her new responsibility in addition to the already delayed Gibe 3 project which is also her responsibility, Dr. Debretsion said it is believed the engineer has the capacity to handle her new status and that she shall be relieved of the Gibe 3 project by another professional.

Dr. Debretsion has clearly stated that the corporation will not be laying off any employees and will be hiring around four thousand more. But he gave express warning to the employees not to expect that their placement to be in Addis Ababa only.

On the 18th and 19th of December 2013, employees had been filling forms to get placement in the two new offices of the former corporation.

Employees of the former corporation say they are extremely confused by the form, according to some of them we managed to talk to. The form is reported not to provide a section for the filler to select which office is being applied for or at what level and salary scale.

According to the website of the Ethiopian Electric Power Corporation (EEPCo), as a public utility enterprise, the company was established for an indefinite duration by regulation No. 18/1997, and conferred with the powers and duties of the previous Ethiopian Electric Light and Power Authority.

The purpose of the corporation was to engage in the business of producing, transmitting ,distributing and selling electrical energy in accordance with economic and social development policies and priorities of the government and to carry out any other related activities that would enable it achieve its purpose.

Photo: Ethiopian Electric Power Corporation logo.

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