Africa’s largest fresh water body records highest water level: hydropower plant

Rescue and recovery missions search for the bodies of dead passengers after a cruise boat capsized in Lake Victoria off Mukono district, Uganda November 25, 2018. REUTERS/Newton Nambwaya
FILE PHOTO: An aerial view shows flood waters near the Sigiri bridge, after River Nzoia burst its banks and due to heavy rainfall and the backflow from Lake Victoria, in Budalangi within Busia County, Kenya May 3, 2020. REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya/File Photo

Lake Victoria, Africa’s largest fresh water body, has recorded its highest ever water level, a hydropower generation company in Uganda said on Friday.

Eskom Uganda Limited, in a tweet on Friday, said the water level on the lake shared by Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania on Thursday rose to 13.42 meters compared to its previous high of 13.41 meters recorded on May 5, 1964.

Eskom, which runs Nalubaale power plant in the eastern Ugandan district of Jinja, said more water is now going to be spilled out of the lake.

“The water spilling is ongoing at 2,400 cubic meters per second for both Nalubaale and Kiira Hydro Power Stations,” Eskom said.

Observers have warned that the release of more water out of the lake is going to lead to flooding of other lakes downstream through the River Nile system.

There are already reports of Lake Kyoga and Lake Albert flooding, displacing thousands of people.

The rising water levels of Lake Victoria have also affected communities staying near the shores, including luxury hotels.

Experts attribute the high water levels to the ongoing torrential rains, environmental degradation and urbanization.