Continent’s energy and water leaders join forces to discuss challenges and celebrate successes at annual African Utility Week in Cape Town in May


“Important to look at African solutions for Africa and we are making great progress”

More than 5000 power and water professionals, including utility heads from Nigeria, Uganda, Namibia, Senegal, Ghana, Malawi, Tanzania, Zambia and South Africa, will gather for the 14th annual African Utility Week and Clean Power Africa conference and expo at Cape Town’s CTICC from 13-14 May. It is the largest utility gathering of its kind on the continent with visitors from 30 African countries and 70 worldwide.

“Africa’s energy and water challenges are not unique but it is important to look at African solutions for Africa and we are making great progress”, says Nicolette Pombo-van Zyl, African Utility Week programme director. “It is a relevant and practical gathering at a time when resources are under the spot light, by the industry, for the industry,” Pombo-van Zyl explains, “we will discuss topics ranging from the energy-water-food nexus, energy efficiency, rural electrification, smart metering, hear about cherry-picked case studies and successful projects around the continent and look at how utilities can incorporate renewable energy into their power mix.”

She continues: “during the Utility CEO Forum, which will be attended by CEOs and high-level utility executives from countries such as Nigeria, Uganda, Namibia, Senegal, Ghana, Uganda, Malawi, Zambia and South Africa, we will particularly focus on short-term, technical wins that utilities can implement, looking at appropriate technologies for Africa, without having to invest in something as expensive and long term as smart grids in order to improve grid efficiencies.”

Expo and free workshops
The expo will focus on the latest technology and services in the industry disciplines of metering, clean power, water, large power users, investment and finance, transmission & distribution, smart grids and generation.

To assist utilities and large power users become more energy efficient and explore renewable energy options, African Utility Week has also teamed up with professional industry bodies for a varied series of free CPD-accredited technical workshops in electrical engineering, energy efficiency and renewable energy taking place on the expo floor.

The African Utility Week Awards will furthermore celebrate the industry’s triumphs and successes throughout 2013 in nine award categories, ranging from Utility Executive of the Year to the Best Rural Electrification Project.

Programme and speaker highlights include:

Opening keynote session:
Panel discussion: The changing African utility landscape – adaptation for longevity

Smarter technologies, increasing customer engagement and the quest for sustainability

• Agnes Dasewicz, Director of USAID’s Private Capital Group for Africa. USA

• Ger Bergkamp, Executive Director, International Water Association, Belgium

• Frans Vreeswijk, Secretary General & Chief Executive Officer, IEC, Switzerland

• Phindile Baleni, Chief Executive Officer, National Energy Regulator South Africa, South Africa

• Ayanda Nakedi, Senior General Manager, Renewables Business Unit, Eskom, South Africa

Lessons learnt from Lesotho’s roll out

• Seitlheko Muhlomi, Metering Manager, Lesotho Electricity Company, Lesotho

Ugandan case study on strides taken to reduce non-technical losses with ABC re-conducting

• Robert Mubiru, Projects Manager, UMEME, Uganda

Realising Africa’s development agenda and the Water-Energy-Food nexus
– Panel dialogue moderator: Paul Yillia, Consultant, Sustainable Energy for All (SE4ALL), Austria

• Peter Flower, Director Water & Sanitation, City of Cape Town, South Africa

• Silver Mugisha, Managing Director, National Water and Sewerage Corporation, Uganda

• Diego Juan Rodriguez, Senior Economist: Water Partnership Programme Manager, World Bank, USA

• Oliver Johnson, Research Fellow Sustainable Energy, Stockholm Environment Institute Africa Centre, Kenya

Nandha Govender, General Manager: Water & Environmental Operations, Eskom, South Africa

• Henry Coppens, Technical Specialist, Energy & Emission, Sappi, South Africa

Large Power Users
Debate on carbon tax: Examine global practices, mitigation opportunities and potential alternative solutions to taxes

Sustainable cities – working with private sector

• Sarah Ward, Head Energy and Climate Change, Environmental Resource Management Department, City of Cape Town, South Africa
Case study: Airport implementation of an Energy Management System

• Jerusha Joseph, Engineer: Mechanical, Airports Company South Africa, South Africa


Smart Grids, Transmission & Distribution

Panel Discussion: Addressing the backlog in the ageing infrastructure

Moderator: Anton Booyzen, South African Asset Management Association, President, South Africa

• Peter Mtonda, Director Distribution, Escom, Malawi

• Gerhard Myburgh, Transmission Asset Manager, Nampower, Namibia


Distribution: Tunisian case study on the MALT rural electrification system

• Jamil Korked, Deputy General Manager, STEG International, Tunisia
Clean energy hybrid mini-grids in remote areas: an investment opportunity

• Dean Cooper, Energy Finance Programme Manager, Division of Technology, Industry and Economics, United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), France

Developments beyond 2014 at Grand Inga

• Hon Minister Bruno Kapandji Kalala, Minister of Water Resources and Electricity, Democratic Republic of Congo

Cameroon’s expanding hydro potentials

• Pierre Edimo, President of the Technical Committee for Rehabilitation of State and Parastatal Enterprises, Ministry of Finance, Cameroon


South Africa’s first utility-scale solar plant goes online – successes and challenges

• Raymond Carlsen, CEO, Scatec Solar, South Africa

Fact not fiction: the true potential of solar revealed

• Wikus van Niekerk, Director, Centre for Renewable and Sustainable Energy Studies, Stellenbosch University, South Africa

• Frank Dinter, Eskom Chair in CSP, Stellenbosch University, South Africa


The importance of turbine maintenance and training staff to do it

• Dieter Sommer, Senior Training Manager, South African Renewable Energy Technology Centre (SARETEC), South Africa

Event dates and location:
Conference and Exhibition (including workshops):  13-14 May 2014
Focus day:  12 May 2014
Site visits:  15 May 2014
Location:  CTICC, Cape Town, South Africa
Website: ;

Communications manager:  Annemarie Roodbol
Telephone :  +27 21 700 3558
Mobile:  +27 82 562 7844