Mon | Sep 24, 2018

Rural folk demand respect from JPS, FLOW

Published:Wednesday | September 21, 2016 | 12:00 AM


The Office of Utilities Regulation's (OUR) mission is to contribute to national development by creating an environment for the efficient delivery of utility services to the customers while ensuring that service providers have the opportunity to make a reasonable return on investment.

I would like to know who ensures that this mandate is being carried out effectively, and, if not, what happens. In my estimation, only one aspect of this mission is being pursued, and that is "ensuring that service providers have the opportunity to make a reasonable return on investment". Customers are not receiving efficient service from many service providers, especially the Jamaica Public Service Company and FLOW. What is the OUR doing about that?

Some of us in residential communities have been silent and sensitive towards these entities because we know it may be difficult to provide high-quality service to rural areas.

For the past week, we have experienced power cuts every single day. Also, our Internet has been on and off. These problems are even more prominent when we experience rain. Based on the fact that this has been happening for years, it is obvious that service providers are just settling for quick fixes instead of finding the root of the problem and fixing it.


I know that if this was taking place in the Corporate Area, these service providers would send out officers to work day and night until the issue was fixed and corporate Jamaica would demand an explanation. Why is it that customers living in rural areas don't get the same respect, and what is the Government and OUR doing about that?

It seems like the OUR is just a legacy department that carries no real clout. Every now and then we see a press release from it when things get really bad, but there is no follow-up.

I implore the Government to step in and ensure that these entities provide proper service and customer care to Jamaican citizens, and if the OUR is no longer relevant, shut it down and stop wasting taxpayers' money. We demand respect.