Power

Meralco fined P19M for lockdown ‘bill shock’

The Energy Regulatory Commission has slapped Manila Electric Co. with a P19 million penalty for the anxiety the power utility giant caused among its customers over the alleged high billings.

The Energy Regulatory Commission has slapped Manila Electric Co. with a P19 million penalty for the anxiety the power utility giant caused among its customers over the alleged high billings.

Meralco was found in violation of ERC’s directives , which include advising customers that the cumulative billing under the enhanced community quarantine should be amortized in four equal monthly installments after the end of the lockdown.

“Meralco’s neglect to provide accurate and timely information especially during this time of pandemic has created chaos and confusion to most of the electricity consuming public…This serious neglect by Meralco resulted to a multitude of complaints filed by its consumers to this Commission,” said ERC chairperson and CEO Agnes Devanadera.

On top of the fines, the ERC also ordered Meralco to extend retail rate discount of P290 million to lifeline consumers or those consuming 100 kilowatt hours (kWh) or less a month.

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