Electricity consumers have been left in the dark after a technical glitch in the token vending system at Kenya Power.
The firm said, in a notice to customers on Thursday, confirmed the interruption had been occasioned by a technical hitch.
“We would like to inform our customers that we are experiencing a technical hitch which is affecting prepaid token generation and postpaid bill payment. Our team has identified the issue, and restoration of normal services is currently in progress,” Kenya Power said in a statement posted on Twitter.
Kenyans who were affected lamented their anger with a spot check by Nairobi News revealing that the technical hitch on token generation could have started on Wednesday night.
The hitch comes barely a month after a major power outbreak affected most parts of the country after the collapse of some towers supporting a high voltage line.
Power was restored after several hours.
In a statement, the company said four pylons supporting the power line, which connects the capital, Nairobi, to a hydroelectric dam in the central region, collapsed. It said vandalism had weakened the structures.
The isn’t the first glitch to hit the company’s payments system.
In April last year, the tokens service was down for more than 24 hours – affecting thousands of homes and businesses whose units had ran out.
Small businesses hardest hit by such hitches and blackouts include salons, welding shops and laundromats among others – leading to financial losses.
Kenya Power has in the recent past sought to increase the number of customers using prepaid meters in a bid to lower the proportion of outstanding electricity bills, most of which are owed by customers on post-paid.
Kenyans owed the company about Sh29 billion in unpaid power bills as at June 2021. However, the company managed to recover Sh900 million of this as at December 2021 following roll-out of an aggressive debt collection strategy.
Kenya Power sold electricity worth Sh20.57 billion through pre-paid meters in the year to June 2021, up from Sh17.81 billion in the previous period, while Sh105.34 billion was earned from post-paid meters.
Affected Kenyans took to social media to express their frustration.
What are the other alternatives to buying Kenya Power tokens???— 𝗠𝗶𝘀𝗵 𝗞𝗮𝗿𝗮𝗻𝗷𝗮 🇰🇪 (@MishBosslady__) March 3, 2022
I need compensation , I have lost more than $ 300— AMAZING ALLAN (@ALLANOKOTH8) March 3, 2022
Na wenye tulilipa Jana na haijarudisha message hadi sai what should we do— Venessa jerotich kipsutto (@kipsutto) March 3, 2022
@KenyaPower_Care hey Kenya power… my meter number 54402825878 doesn't seem to be loading tokens and remains at 0:00 despite trying different troubleshooting methods online… please help— kelvin turins (@skinnybwoykev) March 3, 2022
This is getting worse. I have bought token worth 500 and have not yet received my token, only left with 1 unit. kindly expedite.— Bernard Kinyanjui (@kbenao7) March 3, 2022