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KARUMA PROJECT: GREAT STRIDES DESPITE SOME CHALLENGES On Wednesday, 6th December, 2017, the Board of Directors led by the Board Chairperson, Eng. Proscovia Margaret NJUKI visited the Karuma Hydro Power Project. The Board noted the progress so far made but was also concerned with quality control issues on health and safety, non-conformity, inaccurate concrete mixtures, theft on site among others that were brought to the attention of the Owner’s Engineer and the EPC Contractor to avoid project delay.

As at 1st December, 2017, overall physical progress of works (dam, intake, surge chamber, Tailrace Tunnel, power house, Headrace Tunnel) is estimated at 71%.

Another major area of concern was the issue of Land acquisition delays associated with the Karuma Interconnection Project, which are feared to impact commissioning of the project.

The project is left with 12 months of the 60 months which represents 80% of the time progress.

Photo 1: Aerial photo showing Isimba HPP (183 MW). Extremely upper left background shows the right and lower cofferdams completed. Lower right background shows water running through the five outlets after stage one cofferdams were demolished.


The 183(MW) Isimba Hydropower project is located along the River Nile. At Isimba, the river splits into two branches; the left and right river channels joining through Koova Island. Various project structures and components span across the left river channel, Koova Island, and on the right river channel correspondingly. This is justified by the fact that the river flows in the northern direction.

The First Turbine Lowered at Isimba 183 (MW) HPPThe first turbine unit at the Isimba 183 (MW) hydropower project has been lowered in its position. Another milestone in the development of the flagship hydropower project, the lowering of the turbine signifies one step closer to completion of this project.

The lowering of the unit happened amidst salute and jubilation from other technical members not directly involved in the turbine installation works. For the contractor, it was a nail biting experience that ended all too well!

Isimba 183(MW) HPP shall have four turbines each with an installed capacity of 45.8MW with a total production of 183(MW). Three turbines remain to be lowered and the last one is expected in July, 2018. The turbines were manufactured by ZHEFU CO.LTD from Hangzhou, China. ZHEFU is a renowned and certified hydropower mechanical equipment manufacturer with first class international standards.

The dam’s civil structure has a life span of 100 years and 50-years for the hydro mechanical equipment respectively. The contractor has got a 2-years defects liability period after undertaking of the project. Compared to other dam facilities across Africa, this turbine unit at Isimba was a better deal for the country for its runner shafts are made of stainless steel.

UEGCL maintains that this project is on schedule and will be completed in the coming year 2018.

See more in pictorial THE LOWERING OF THE TURBINE UNIT on 8th DECEMBER 2017