Monday, July 29, 2013

‘Amend ordinance so we can sue SEB’

Joseph Tawie

July 28, 2013
A lawyer has offered his services to any consumer wishing to sue Sarawak Energy Berhad for losses incurred as a result of a statewide blackout last month.
KUCHING: A state assemblyman here wants the SESCO ordinance amended to allow consumers to sue Sarawak Energy Berhad (SEB), the sole supplier of electricity in the state.
“Currently there is no provision in the ordinance, so we need to amend this,”  said Batu Lintang assemblyman See Chee How.
He also offered to assist any domestic or commercial consumer who wanted to sue SEB for their losses incurred as a result of the six-hour statewide blackout on June 27.
“We need a test case. Although there is no provision in the SESCO ordinance for consumers to sue SEB, let us go to court and let it decide.
“Probably the court will make a decision on whether SEB should be held responsible.
“We are prepared to assist any consumer on this legal action,” stressed See who is a lawyer.
He said he would also table a motion in the coming State Legislative Assembly meeting in November on the setting up of Sarawak’s Select Committee of Competency, Accountability and Transparency (CAT).
See said once the committee is formed, it could call for a public hearing on the recent blackout.

Just PR talk
See pointed out that until now the general public has been kept in the dark over the real cause or causes of the statewide blackout last month despite the fact that several committees had been formed to investigate the blackout.
“But so far the committees have not come out with their reports,” he said.
See was responding to a statement yesterday by Awang Tengah Ali Hassan, Public Utilities Minister that the state government was mulling legal action against the federal government-owned Sarawak Hydro Sdn Bhd, the operator of Bakun hydroelectric dam for the blackout.
“Do it, instead of just talking about it, and I fear that it will just fizzle out.
“I hope the state government will do it and don’t just say it and leave it that way. When Awang Tengah talked about losses he should be more specific and be open.
“I doubt the state government will sue Sarawak Hydro. It is only a PR (public relations) exercise,” said See who is also state PKR vice chairman.
See said that if Sarawak Hydro is responsible for the blackout, then the people would want  compensation.
~ Free Malaysia Today

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