Mon | Aug 10, 2020

JPS’s recent notification is camouflage

Published:Saturday | August 1, 2020 | 12:14 AM

THE EDITOR, Madam:

A recent announcement by the Jamaica Public Service (JPS) that it will now begin to inform residential customers immediately upon their electricity consumption exceeding, by 30 per cent, their previous month’s bill seems nothing short of a desperate attempt to regain some measure of credibility and trust from the Jamaican consumers.

This public-relations circus has become a source of chronic irritation to customers who are in no doubt that these exercises are designed for no other purpose than to mislead and befuddle.

The futility of the announcement is borne out by the fact that it is only under extraordinary circumstances that a consumer would consume 30 per cent more energy than the previous month. But by using this highly improbable figure, JPS would want the unsuspecting customers to believe that this is a normal occurrence. JPS’s deception gets worse in light of the fact that the company says that a primary objective of the notification is so that the customer can make the necessary energy-saving adjustments early. So, here JPS is telling us that not only is this 30 per cent increase highly probable, but it can take place within a few days.

ACCOUNTABILITY

When all of this is analysed, there is only one conclusion that can be logically drawn: JPS has no intention of abandoning its practice of coercing its customers into paying for services they did not receive.

But perhaps more shameful and shocking is the deafening silence of the Government on this extraordinary and unusual action by JPS to charge legal customers for energy they did not use. No doubt, JPS has been emboldened to continue with this despicable conduct because the Government has never taken seriously its responsibility to protect consumers from the predatory assaults of the powerful.

By the way, what was the outcome of that meeting that was supposed to take place between the head of the JPS and the Cabinet? Can we get some answers?

CASHLEY BROWN

cashleybrown@yahoo.com