PLN Responds to Public Complaints Over Increased Bills

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Markus Wisnu Murti

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  • TEMPO.CO, JakartaState-owned electricity firm PLN stated that not all customers’ electricity bills surged during the work from home or WFH period as the government enforced the social restrictions or PSBB order. Out of the total 34.5 million postpaid subscribers, only 4.3 million people complained about the hike of above 20 percent in their bills.

    “So it’s only one-seventh percent. It (the figure) is small, you see,” said the PLN Senior Executive Vice President for Business and Customer Service, Yuddy Setyo Wicaksono, in an online discussion published via the firm’s YouTube account on Monday, June 8.

    Of the total 4.3 million subscribers, Yuddy stated that only 6 percent or 258,000 users had their electricity bills rocket by 200 percent. While the majority, which was 55.8 percent or 2.4 million users, experienced a 20-50 percent hike.

    However, Yuddy clarified that the electricity tariff was not changed since the PLN could not adjust it partially. “The tariff is set by the government under the approval of the DPR (the House of Representatives),” he underlined.

    Yuddy outlined three factors that caused an increased bill. First, people practiced remote working, which led to a hike in electricity use, and secondly, people unconsciously consumed more electricity during Ramadan in May 2020.

    The third factor is due to the average bill calculation for electricity use in April and May since PLN officers could not directly check each house’s electrical meter given the PSBB order. Thus, the uncollectible bills were added to the bill for the next months.

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