New rules to force Kenya Power to pay for connection delays

Kenya power personnel at work. [File, Standard]

The Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (Epra) is seeking to stamp its authority in the energy sector with new draft regulations targeting both suppliers and consumers. The rules seek to compel power suppliers to submit to Epra performance reports indicating the reliability and quality of supply as well as quality of service at the end of each month and financial year.

The monthly report will be submitted before the 14th day of the month while the yearly report will have to be submitted within 120 days after the end of a financial year.

“Objective of the new plan is to prescribe penalties to be imposed for defaults in supplying electrical energy to any consumer and circumstances under which the licensee shall be exempted from such penalties,” states Epra.

“On the consumers’ side, the new regulations spell out instances when the power supply to a consumer may be discontinued. The licensees will also be required to furnish Epra with data and reporting requirements.” The regulations state that where the licensee fails to address a complaint to their satisfaction, the complainant may lodge a dispute with Epra.

A delay in reporting accidents within 48 hours will be penalised Sh10,000 daily for the first 10 days that the incident wasn’t submitted.

The power supplier also risks between Sh5,000 to Sh2,000 in fines per month for delay in the connection of service for paid-up consumers. Failure to notify consumers for planned interruption 48 hours before notice attracts Sh10,000 per interruption.

“The draft will assist in enhancing the reliability, quality of supply and quantity of service in the electric power sub-sector,” said Daniel Kiptoo, the Epra acting director-general.

On Tuesday, the regulator invited the public to share their views on the draft regulations whose deadline is May 14, this year.