Citizens slam JEDCO against power charges in dollar rate

By Bida Elly David

Power beneficiaries in Juba have slammed JEDCO company against charging electric units in United States dollars creating difficulties for some citizens to meet the cost in case of any rise in the rate of the hard currency.

JEDO power Supply Company is a private company that formerly signed a memorandum of Understanding with the government to install and transmit power to all areas in Juba. The company right from its emergence has been charging their customers using dollar rate to meet other costs.

In August this year, some government officials during the power and gas conference held in Juba called on the power suppling companies in Juba to at least reduce the rate of charges per unit in order to help citizens meet some of their demand in time.

Speaking to No.1 Citizen Daily Newspaper yesterday, one of the beneficiaries of JEDCO Company reiterated concerns as the company charged their customers in dollar making it hard for their units to last.

“When this company started, we thought that they were going to compromise the citizens by charging them using low rate in pounds. I am very upset as a citizen. Imagine we are paying power in dollar rate yet the dollar keeps fluctuating every time. This company does not care whether the rise in dollars affects their customers or not. They just need money and that is all. What will happen to us if 100$ shall exchange 100,000 South Sudanese pounds. Will they also charge a unit of power according to the increase of the hard currency? This is a mess,” he said.

She said that the cost of transportation to the power source was another challenge that impeded most citizens in the city since there has been no home to home power delivery.

However, a female shop keeper in one of the markets said that these heavy charges in dollar would affect many students at various levels as they lacked power to concentrate in their studies as well as impact most businesses in passive areas.

“Many homes have students and children who use the power as a source of revision. These heavy charges will affect the learning process of these learners. Above all many people use power for security reasons to safeguard their homes and if this power goes off, it will be risky for people as the rate of pilferage will rise,” she said.

Furthermore, they reiterated that the company should introduce a fixed rate paid in pounds to enable poor citizens get access to little power units rather than leaving it to fluctuate based on the movement of the hard currency.

They called on the government to intervene into such tragic situation where almost all the citizens stay under the state of desperation.

However, efforts to reach the management of JEDCO as well as government officials for more clarification were unsuccessful after several trials.

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