Tanzanian president John Magufuli on Friday laid the foundation stone for the proposed 2,115MW hydropower plant over Rufiji River in the Selous game reserve, setting in motion the construction process of one of the largest projects in the country.
Upon completion, the Stiegler’s Gorge hydropower project is expected to double the East African country’s current power output.
“Today we save the people of Tanzania from shortage of power. Our envisaged industrial economy needs adequate, cheap and reliable power supply,” said Mr Magufuli.
The dam is located in the heart of the Selous, a major game reserve in the country. The reserve is home to a huge variety of species including elephants, cheetahs, giraffes and crocodiles.
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Conservationists are opposed to this project saying it threatens the endangered animal species in the area especially the black rhinoceros and elephants.
Cairo-based JV Arab Contractors Company and the El Sewedy Electric, an Egyptian engineering firm, won the tender to implement the project.
German MPs oppose construction of power plant in Selous game reserve