If Your Electricity Bill Is Higher Than Usual, It's Not TNB's Fault
Malaysians are complaining that their latest electricity bill has doubled or tripled than the usual amount.
In the last week, many consumers in Malaysia took to social media to express their shock and anger over the sudden and sharp hike in their electricity bills
Many consumers have been posting their complaint on Tenaga Nasional Berhad's (TNB) Facebook page, TNB Careline, in the last week or so.
It was noted that most of these complaints were about how the latest bills issued by TNB had doubled or tripled the usual amount despite the similar usage habits.
TNB holds a monopoly on power transmission business, being the only company in Malaysia which supplies electricity to households.
Responding to the complains, Tenaga Nasianal Berhad (TNB), issued an official statement on their Facebook page, yesterday, 21 April, explaining the possible reasons behind the sudden hike in household electricity bills
TNB said that consumers are more likely to lower the temperature and increase the fan speed of the air-conditioner in this period of time due to the scorching hot and dry weather. It also added that consumers are may be using their air-conditioner unit for prolonged hours.
All of these usage habits will ultimately result in higher bills.
TNB also explained that the consumption of electricity may increase if air-conditioners are not maintained properly.
TNB also stated that the country’s electricity consumption reached an all-time high demand last month, an effect of the El-Nino phenomenon
The highest-ever demand for electricity in Peninsular Malaysia was recorded at 17,788 megawatts (MW) on 20 April by Tenaga Nasional Berhad(TNB).
In a statement yesterday, 21 April, TNB said the peak reading of 17,788 megawatts recorded on Wednesday was a 37.82 percent increase, compared to demand on Jan 1(12,906 MW) due to the El-Nino phenomenon.
“The heat during the day has a prolonged effect that lasts up to the early morning of the following day, this has influenced the use of appliances such as air conditioning units which are relatively used more compared to other appliances,” it added.
Meanwhile, the Malaysian Consumers Movement (MCM) has urged TNB to offer a one-off rebate to ease consumers' burden, particularly those from the lower and middle income groups
"While El Nino is a natural phenomenon, it has taken a toll on household finances of consumers in the form of high electricity bill," Malaysian Consumers Movement (MCM) president Darshan Singh Dhillon said in an open letter on Malaysiakini.
"The unbearable heat has demanded consumers to switch on their air-conditioning units and other air cooling equipment for longer periods throughout the day to ensure comfort."
"This is probably time for TNB to discharge its social responsibly to help a segment of the rakyat who may desperately require help while an opportunity for the government to offer acceptability on taxes collected via the Goods and Services Tax (GST)," he added.
Muslim Consumers Association Malaysia (PPIM) also urged TNB to consider its social responsibility by offering a 20 percent discount to all of its consumers
PPIM Chief Activist, Datuk Nadzim Johan said, the discount will not burden TNB financially as the electricity bill has been rising since February and will continue to rise until June.
“Because of the heat from the hot weather, consumers have no choice but to use electric fans and air conditioners for comfort."
"So what is wrong if TNB and the government consider this proposal," he said to Malaysia Gazette.