Kenya Power Limited has never shied off controversies especially after introduction of token system where customer purchases electricity token and credit units to his meter by typing a given code on the meter’s customer interface unit screen. As the customer uses electricity, his/her credit balance is reduced each day until the units are exhausted prompting the customer to top it up.
However, there has been barrage of complaints from Kenyans since the introduction as some ken observers opine that the system can be manipulated to rip-off the customers through gross overbillings. As a result Kenya Power Ltd. Have been dragged to court on multiple occasions due to billing malfeasance and notably by lawyer Apollo Mboya.
In 2018, Lawyer Apollo Mboya filed application seeking to suspension of the implementation of new power tariffs, arguing that it is discriminative. He argued that the new tariff is meant to circumvent court orders issued in January restraining Kenya Power and the ERC from charging consumers with inflated backdated electricity bills to recover Sh10.1 billion.
“That pending the hearing and determination of this application and this honourable court be pleased to issue an order directed at the 1st (Kenya Power) and 2nd (ERC)respondent to stop and cease the implementation of electricity retail tariffs announced and published by the 2nd respondent on July 30, 2018,” reads one of the orders sought by Mr Mboya.
The Kenyan senate has focused on the electricity distributor mode of billing and Kenya Power has been asked to explain why it bills its postpaid customers exorbitantly and disconnects their power if they complain. Appearing before the Senate Energy Committee yesterday, Kenya Power acting General Manager Business Strategy Thagishu Kiiru could not give reasons for the inflated billings.
“These are the challenges we are facing and we are working on resolving them,” Mr Kapachin said. “Not all bills are faulty though.” He said 90 per cent of post-paid customers get actual readings.
However seems the perennial challenges will not be resolve soon as a user curiously has exposed astronomical amounts of taxes charged when purchasing the tokens from Kenya power system.
“Can someone please make me understand aka educate me why Kenya power charges all these taxes for electricity. So I bought the tokens worth sh.1500 and almost sh.600 goes to some weird tax deductions! Only 952.65 goes to token amount,” shared user by name Betty Mihari in Buyers Beware Facebook group wondering loudly the amount going to taxation as it nears almost 40% of the amount.