(Lilongwe) Malawi, one of the poorest countries on the planet, was plunged into darkness on Saturday evening due to a major power outage affecting the whole territory, the national energy company (Escom) announced in a statement.
“A system outage around 6 p.m. Saturday, June 18, 2022 caused a loss of electricity supply in the country. Efforts are being made to restore power as quickly as possible,” Escom said.
Apologizing for the inconvenience, the public company recommended that its users turn off their electrical appliances “because the power could be restored sooner than expected”. The country has been experiencing massive blackouts for several months, which can last up to eight hours.
In late January, Malawians were without power for three days after tropical storm Ana hit, killing dozens in southern Africa and damaging one of the country’s main power stations.
This new national cut has angered Internet users. “Let’s just admit that our country is poor and broke,” one resident posted on Facebook. “In other countries, ten minutes of power outage, the minister goes out to apologize to the people.”
Malawi is facing great economic difficulties and marred by numerous political scandals linked to corruption.
Less than 15% of the population, which has more than 19 million inhabitants, has access to electricity, more than 90% of hydroelectric origin, according to the World Bank. More than half of the population lives below the poverty line.