- Wednesday, 24 September 2014
The much awaited privatisation has come yet service delivery has not improved, it may be too early to expect massive improvements but the fact is that it may have worsened. So many reasons have been adduced for this lack lustre performance, most being ascribed to extraneous factors. No matter the cause, the customer experience remains unpalatable.
The regulatory agency, saddled with the responsibility of ensuring service delivery is overwhelmed with other core functions of developing regulations as much of the experience is new and most instances represent trail blazing events where requisite institutional instruments/capacity are scant. The other core functions of service delivery and customer satisfaction have consequently been neglected replicating or re-enacting for the customers, experiences of old, when government was in control and where service delivery was a luxury.
The new owners of the successor companies, DisCos in this regard, have been accused of not living up to expectations by way of anticipated investments towards improvement of the inherited derelict distribution infrastructure. This stems from the understanding that improving service delivery, which is expensive, means improving infrastructure and with no penalties forthcoming for non-compliance, at least for now, the Distribution Companies (DisCos) are not motivated to improve the customers’ experience.
The issues discussed above present two scenarios; poor service delivery and weak regulatory oversight. There is therefore need to develop mechanisms that will serve to agitate the regulator to live up to its enforcement responsibilities as well as to pressure the DisCos to perform.
The impact of the Independent Energy Watch Initiative will be;
To systematically engender a culture of service delivery in the power sector through active regulatory enforcement and improved customer focused service delivery by the DisCos.
The outcome of the Independent Energy Watch Initiative will be;
Improved customer awareness of the service delivery codes and how their rights are enshrined therein, and through the activation of these codes, DisCos are goaded towards improved performance, and the regulator pressured to enforce and extract improved performance from market participants.