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PNP to JPS: Restore power to paying customers immediately

Published:Tuesday | May 13, 2014 | 8:49 AM

Debbie-Ann Wright, News Editor - Radio

KINGSTON, Jamaica:

The ruling People’s National Party is calling for the Jamaica Public Service Company Limited (JPS) to immediately resume full service to paying customers.

Yesterday the JPS confirmed it would be cutting the number of hours that power is provided to communities where more than 70 per cent of the electricity is stolen.

The JPS said the move is part of its strategy to get more persons to pay for the electricity they use, and reduce the overall cost to paying customers.

The PNP says its executive and parliamentary committee met last evening to discuss the matter and the party wants immediate clarification of the issues surrounding the decision of the JPS.

The PNP says the JPS needs to say what law allows such a decision to be taken and acted upon by the company.

The PNP also wants to know whether the JPS has explored any other recourse to accurately target and identify illegal connections.

The party says a subcommittee has been mandated to have further discussions with energy minister Phillip Paulwell and possibly with the senior management of the JPS.

Meanwhile, prominent attorney Bert Samuels says the JPS could run afoul of local laws if it carries out its threat to deprive paying customers of electricity supply at the expense of electricity thieves.

He says the JPS is contracted to provide 24 hours of service.

Samuels says any deliberate breach of that contract by the JPS entitles those customers to damages and specific performance of the contract.

He is also warning that the move by the JPS could trigger far-reaching social unrest.


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