I live in Kenya and lately, my life is totally controlled by a company called The Kenya Power & Lighting Company Ltd, in short KPLC. (KPLC / Keeping People Lunatic and Confused)
KPLC kidnapped me and I am their hostage.
– On Sunday, due to routine system maintenance, I did not have power from 8am until 7pm. An update: for the same reason, the next Sunday, I had no power from 8:30am until 5pm.
– Monday, the same from 3pm until 4am because a truck hit the overhead cables. Yes, Nairobi, a capital, still uses wooden poles and overhead cable. If they cannot figure out how to make sidewalks*, forget about underground cables.
– Today morning, at 6am working on my desktop the power went off for half an hour.
A few months back my refrigerator, TV and 2 DVD players fried due to KPLC overload and almost the same for some of my neighbors.
The worst is when I checked my bill which is Ksh 3,239.40 for last month and I am thrifty on using power. My consumption is only Ksh 1,687.50 . The difference, a whopping Ksh 1453.58 is for the following taxes and adjustment as follows;
- Fuel Cost charges (318.40 cents/Kwa)
- FOREX adj. (85.0 cents /Kwa)
- Inflation adj. 10.0
- ERC Levy 5.00%
- VAT 12.00 %
I am a average person when it comes to all this numbers and acronyms. I do not know how to calculate percentage, I was not born a calculator but it looks that the taxes and adjustment are about 80% or more of my consumption. It is outrageous!
Nicely enough, I receive an e-mail from my Embassy with a beautiful color attachment, informing the signing of a commercial agreement with KPLC to upgrade their network. So, if I understand correctly the French Government is aware that my bill his high and that KPLC charge the highest electricity rates in Africa.
It is confusing; it is not KPLC letting me know of the matter but the French embassy in Kenya doing so on their behalf.
Wow! That’s efficient! The information did a round trip to Europe then came back to me who lives about 10km from the Embassy and 3km from KPLC. Therefore, I think, I will no longer bring my concerns to KPLC but to my Embassy. Thank you!
* I notice that lots of people are not familiar with the word “sidewalk”. I assume because there is so few here. However, they understand the “side of the road”. It does make sense; you cannot stand on a sidewalk if they do not exist, so you stand on the side of the road. For further information check my post “Where are the sidewalks in Nairobi”