Last Thursday, 20th January 2011, (they had advertised earlier that the Nyali area in my neighbourhood, at least), they were going to do maintenance from morning till 5.00 pm when the power would be back.
But, this being a banana republic where few people including KPLC, have scant regard for keeping time, the residents continued suffering in the dark and extreme heat of Mombasa. At least one suffering resident decided to call KPLC's emergency numbers to no avail. Not one of them was being answered.
So, he called me and asked me what to do. This was at around 8.30 pm and the power still had not returned. I advised him to call Ms. Faith Njuguna's number and also to let me know asap the results of that call.
Fortunately, for everybody, as soon as he had hung up after talking to me, the lights came back (somewhere between 8.30 pm and 8.45 pm), and so he did not have to call Ms. Njuguna.
Now, this matter of KPLC and it's emergency numbers is a long standing grouch of the Kenyan public (this disease seems to pervade KPLC in other towns, too, including Nairobi).
If the latest complaint had not reached my ears, I would not have shared a recent experience of a friend, but, I think I will have to in the hope that KPLC and it's minions take their customers more seriously and treat them with some respect.
The following are the misadventures of some Tudor residents at night and while Ms. Njuguna promises in her email to my friend that KPLC will take the emergency crew to task, nothing seems to have changed. And therefore her email was of the cosmetic variety and a window dressing.
Please, read the whole email and then think about who would have been responsible if there had been loss of property and lives? Does KPLC sound like a responsible company?
On 1/14/2011 3:30 PM, Amira wrote:
Just to keep you in the “loop” see below my correspondence with Faith. Thanks so much to have forwarded me her no – she seems to be an exception!!!!!!!!!!!!
Let’s see what the outcome will be
Take care & have a nice weekend
Dear Mrs Khan,
I wish to acknowledge receipt of your email below ,dated 13/1/2011,our telephone conversation on 13/1/2011 and my subsequent visit on 14/1/2011. On behalf of KPLC, Coast Region and on my own behalf, I wish to convey our sincere apologies for the distress that you and your neighbors’ underwent on the night of 12th January 2011, following the fire incidence on our transformer.
We regret the service breakdown on our part and wish to thank you for taking your time to bring it to our attention. We assure you that the matter is being handled with the seriousness it deserves and corrective measures have been put in place to avert a similar occurrence in the future. We value you as our esteemed customer.
In our strive to improve and delight our customers, we have adopted ‘CUSTOMER FIRST’ as our key value in driving change towards focusing on delighting our customers. Despite the mishap on 12th January 2011, we wish to assure you of our commitment to serve you diligently and to keep growing together with you as we all drive the economy.
KPLC mission is “POWERING PEOPLE FOR BETTER LIVES” of which we are dedicated to and shall keep correcting where we go wrong.
I have copied this email to our Regional Manager
Once again, we apologise
Principal Customer Relations Officer
Dear Ms Njuguna,
Our telephone conversation of just now refers.
Kindly note the following statement:
10:23pm I noticed that the transformer outside our house is on fire
10:25pm made my first attempt to call KPLC emergency no: 2224533 - NO ANSWER
10.29pm I called 020-2074846 apparently another KPLC contact no but once again – NO ANSWER
10.30pm I pressed the 911 alarm button of our house
10.33pm I called the 4911 number to report the incident and to ask them to help us to get in touch with KPLC
In the meantime the fire was ranging and most of the neighbors were on the road worrying about their properties
10.43pm 911 security armed car arrived as well as Crest Security & Texas Alarm
Collected sand and tried to extinguish the fire – which resulted in a huge bang!
In the meantime neighbors were trying to get hold of KPLC too – BUT IN VAIN!
In the meantime 3 policemen from Central arrived who were called by one of the neighbors. Their attempt to get in touch with KPLC through their so called “hotline” was left un-answered too.
10.53pm called once again KPLC emergency no: 2224535 - NO ANSWER
Fire calmed down
Approx 11pm huge bang with big sparks! AND STILL NO FIREBRIGADE OR KPLC IN SIGHT!!
11.10pm Neighbor got hold of the KPLC call centre. Reply from the gentlemen on the phone:”I’ve just started the shift – don’t know anything about this! Please give me your account no!” instead of attending to the lady’s stressed call and acting appropriately
11.13pm I gave instructions to the 911 security team to go to Mbaraki to get KPLC maintenance team.
11:27pm I called 0717 – 703331 given by another neighbor but it was “mteja”
11:28pm than I was given the no. 0711-031680 (KPLC NBO) when we called we reported the incident once again and asked them to help us getting the maintenance team from MBA
11:30pm 911 security team arrived back. They’ve reported that they did not get anybody at Mbaraki but went to Electricity House where they reported the urgent need of help.
FIRE WENT OFF
We waited till 12am for KPLC to come BUT IN VAIN!! 911 Security team kindly offered to stick around to watch the transformer and to see if anybody from KPLC will report.
It is now 1.53pm the next day and we have not seen ANYBODY from Kenya Power & Lighting Company! We find this ridicules! Thank GOD Almighty the fire went off by itself and no sparks hit the nearby tree. GOD FORBID what could have happened! Please note, that I’ve addressed this on Facebook and will inform the media accordingly.
I will send you pictures in a separate mail – taken just now.