TNB must not overcharge the consumers — Roger Tan

JUNE 1 — Last Friday, I was presented with the latest electricity consumption bill by Tenaga Nasional Berhad. It was for the period from February 27, 2020 to May 29, 2020, consisting of a total of 93 days. The amount due is RM2,151.90. I have taken the liberty to attach the bill.

I take issue with it because TNB did not render any bill, even an estimate bill, for the last three months. As TNB services are considered essential services during the Movement Control Order and Conditional Movement Control Order periods since March 18, reading could have been taken by the TNB meter readers during this period. Otherwise, an estimated bill must be issued every month.

By only rendering a bill after three months, I have now ended up paying more because TNB tariff rates are calculated based on the principle of use more, pay more. So, the final prorated blocks of 2,520 kWh (kilowatt hours) were charged at the highest tier rate of 0.571. If TNB had rendered an estimate bill based on my average monthly bill of about RM500, the total amount which I should be paying is only around RM1,500.  

By lumping together all three months of consumption, TNB has now unjustly enriched themselves by about RM600. I believe hundreds of thousands of other consumers are in similar predicament.

In my opinion, this is unlawful. Regulation 4(1) of the Licensee Supply Regulations, 1990, made under the Electricity Supply Act, 1990, states very clearly that “bills in respect of amounts due to the licensee shall be rendered to the consumer monthly and shall be paid within thirty working days of presentation.” Regulation 4(4) further states that in the event it is not possible due to any circumstances beyond TNB’s control to read the meter, TNB “shall bill the consumer based upon the consumer’s consumption record and history for the previous three months consecutively and make the necessary adjustment to the consumer’s account when the actual meter reading is obtained.”

In other words, a bill must be rendered every month. If actual reading is not possible, then an estimated bill must be issued.

I sincerely hope that the Energy Commission will investigate this so that the Commission and TNB will give we consumers a good explanation.

*This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of Malay Mail.

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