Monday, September 12, 2011

Incompetent 'service'

Starting again, from Sat/Sun night when we had at least 2 to 3 outages in Nyali, Sunday started with another outage early in the morning when power was restored around 7.15 am. When I had rung the Engineer in-charge, Mr. Mbaluka, at no point had he given even an inkling of what else was to come in about an hour's time. Not everybody buys daily newspapers these days and therefore it would be much better if KPLC (re-branded but not changed it's work ethic in the least, to Kenya Power), would send SMSes to it's customers like they do for other things.

When at about 8.30 am, the power went off, yet again, I called the above mentioned gentleman and was told (and he had a gleeful sound to his voice), that, 'sorry, they were having a so-called 'scheduled and advertized' outage for the whole day'. I asked him why it had gone earlier than the usual 9.00 am and got the reply that, 'In fact we're late. It should have gone off at 7.00 am!'. So, my next question and observation was, if that meant that power would be restored earlier than the usual 5.00 pm. To which he replied, 'Let me see, if I can restore it earlier....'

After this, I and the rest of my neighbours thought that he would keep his word.

But, comes 5.00 pm and then 6.00 pm, there was still no sign of normalcy. This necessitated another call to Eng. Mbaluka. Many rings later, he finally answered and told me to give them another hour. One of my elderly neighbours, called me to find out if I knew when and why we were still in darkness and I passed on to him what I'd been told by Eng. Mbaluka.

Well, 7.00 pm came and went in total darkness, but, still nothing. Some of us were by then running out of battery life on our phones, too and trying to preserve whatever was left in case of emergencies. Around 8.45 pm I got a call from another neighbour wondering what was up and observing that everything in the fridge was getting defrosted and spoiled and who would be responsible for that expensive damage. I suggested to him and this applies to everybody who receive my emails - we should collectively hold Kenya Power (KPLC), responsible for spoilage, damage to health and equipment, henceforth. Since they have claimed that by re-branding their company, they are also going to be more accountable to their subscribers, then, they should be ready to face the consequences of their shoddy 'service'.

Now, you must be wondering why people were calling me to find out about the power. The reason is that they receive these missives of mine and figure that I might have some kind of inside knowledge.

Finally, the last time I called Eng. Mbaluka just before 9.00 pm, he sounded harried and told me to give them yet another hour. This was nearly 3 hours from the last time he had told me this same thing!

Because I could not sleep very well, I found that we suddenly had illumination at 11.45 pm, but, it didn't last for very long and we were thrown into darkness, again. This happened at least 4 to 5 times in the remainder of the night with awful fluctuations and at about 4.45 am the lights came on again. This time, they have stayed that way, Alhamdulillah.

But, we still haven't had an apology or an explanation for the over 15 hours of total blackout and subsequently and under cover of night, the continuous outages and fluctuations. We demand both an explanation and compensation for the damage that has resulted due to this latest fiasco.

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