30 January 2013

Rwanda: EWSA to Adopt New Power Pricing System

In a bid to resolve complaints electricity consumers have been raising over cash power renting and the increase in prices of power, the Energy, Water and Sanitation Authority (EWSA) is working on a project that provides options to pay electricity according to how much consumers use.

The move follows a recommendation for change after a question raised by a customer over prices, especially the cash power monthly due, during last year's National Dialogue.

Speaking to The New Times, Lucien Ruterana, the strategic advisor to Director General of EWSA, who is leading the team which is currently working on the project, said they will soon initiate a system under which clients will be charged according to the quantity of units used per month.

Under the same system, the Rwf 500 for cash power renting every month will be scrapped.

"We carefully carried out a study on electricity prices so that in the future we can render better service to our customers. We will not identify clients' capacities through their earnings; we will distinguish them according to the quantity of electricity they consume," he said, adding that under the new system, the more you consume, the more you pay, an existing procedure for the EWSA's bills for water.

According to Ruterana, this study was submitted to the Ministry of Infrastructure (MININFRA) for review and the ministry approved it. It will be published in February.

Marie Françoise Isumbingabo, the State Minister in charge of Energy and Water yesterday declined to comment when contacted.

Currently, the lowest price anyone can pay to have power is Rwf500 which is an equivalent of 3 units, with a charge of Rwf 134 per Kwh.

Prices differ from peak to the off peak hours for industrial consumers.

Some consumers welcomed the move, saying this will help curb the inconsistencies in payments made.

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