KUCHING, Oct 22: Sarawak Energy has an established internal process when dealing with meter tampering cases.
The state power development company has assured customers that its utility arm Syarikat Sesco Bhd meter inspection team adheres to a stringent and systematic procedure to ensure that all evidence is collected, examined and preserved as guided by the provisions of the Electricity Ordinance.
“Sesco works closely with the Electrical Inspectorate Unit of Ministry of Utilities Sarawak and the police to curb this dangerous crime, which endangers lives and damages customers’ properties including electrical appliances that may lead to a fire.
“Sesco’s meter inspection team follows the established Standard Operating Procedures in performing meter inspection, which includes detailed checking of abnormalities on the meter and its installation such as disturbed seals or modification to meter’s wiring.
“The seized exhibits are sent to meter laboratory for further comprehensive tests and validation on the meter irregularities before the final confirmation of results,” Sarawak Energy said in a statement.
It added that subsequently, a letter will be issued to inform the customer on the irregularities and the arrears charged to recover the loss of revenue due to the meter tampering act.
Should the customer need further clarification, the customer can approach Sesco’s officer as stated in the arrears letter, it continued.
“Sesco has also put in place an appeal process if the customer objects to the findings. The customers can approach any Sesco office to submit their appeals.
“This mechanism provides an opportunity for the customers to present any documentation or evidence to support their appeal. All cases will be assessed thoroughly ensuring a fair final determination of the arrears with the outcome notified to the customers,” Sarawak Energy said.
The company added that in Miri, about 80 accounts have been disconnected in October for outstanding arrears arising from meter tampering, and 28 of the accounts have settled their arrears, while 16 have appealed.
Meanwhile, no response was received from four accounts and the remaining 32 accounts have opted to settle their arrears in installments, it continued.
“As for the two cases in Miri highlighted in a press conference recently, both suspected tampered meters were seized with acknowledgement of the respective customer representatives at the site.
“Arrears letters were then issued to both customers with details of the tampering and the arrears charged. These arrears would appear in the customer’s monthly electricity bills if left unpaid.”
Sarawak Energy said the tampering was detected due to abnormally low monthly consumption and after meter replacement, it reverts to the typical monthly consumption reading.
The arrears derived based on these differences and where the consumers disagreed, any dispute may be raised in the appeal process, it continued.
Customers can contact Sarawak Energy Customer Care Centre at 1300-88-3111 directly should they have any queries. For further enquiries on arrears charged, customers are urged to approach Sesco personally. — DayakDaily