As farmers and herders fight over dwindling water levels in the Pangani River Basin in northeastern Tanzania, a new dispute is emerging between farmers and the state-run power utility firm over this precious resource. The Tanzania Electric Supply Company or TANESCO manages three hydropower plants located on the Pangani River near Muheza district, which are meant to provide 17 percent of the country’s electricity…For the last four years Tanzania has been experiencing a drought that locals say is the worst to have ever hit the region. Thousands of farmers and herders who earn a living here have been affected. Jumanne Mujuni, a councilor from Mombo town, which is located a few kilometres from the Hale hydropower station in Muheza district, told IPS that the drought has pushed many to the brink as they compete with TANESCO for dwindling water supplies. He added that many locals are now embroiled in disputes with the state-run utility.“All these problems that we face are rooted in the drought. There were hardly any [problems] when there was enough water in the river,” he said.
Excerpt from Kizito Makoye,Power Struggle Rises Over Tanzania’s Pangani River, IPS, Oct. 24, 2013