Police Diffused Obstruction during SESCO’s Meter Inspection Operation

Bintulu, 18/1/2013:- Police had to be called in to assist in SESCO’s (a subsidiary company of Sarawak Energy Berhad) meter inspection team at Ecorich Park in Bintulu when a customer refused SESCO inspection team to replace the tampered meter. The operation was triggered following the tip off from the public. The customer was caught stealing electricity by bypassing the meter. The owner was furious and shouted at the team that they have no right to enter the premise. He later called a few men to his house in an attempt to intimidate SESCO’s inspection team.

From past experience, house owners who have tampered their meters would find excuses to stop SESCO inspection team from entering their premises, to avoid from being caught. They would lock their gates and refuse entry to SESCO inspection team. Sometimes, they would also tell SESCO inspection team to come at a later time and try to rectify or remove the meter tampering evidence before the said time.

All SESCO meter inspection teams are authorized by the Director of Electrical Inspectorate Unit (EIU) under Ministry of Public Utilities. Sarawak Energy's Corporate Communication Senior Manager, Haniza Abdul Hamid emphasized that under Section 32B(2) of the Electricity Ordinance (Cap 50), Sesco Authorized Person can be issued with Warrant of Entry which allows them to access the locked premises. If the meter and/or its wiring system are found tampered or unsafe because of tampering, Sesco Authorized Person would require to immediately rectify the wiring and to take down the tampered meter as evidence. Police report will be lodged for further investigation and possibility of prosecution. The public can also request for SESCO identification pass before allowing the SESCO technician to enter their premise. If in doubt, the public can also call SESCO office to inquire if there is a meter inspection operation on going at their area.

SESCO appreciates the public for their concern and effort to report power theft. Public can continue to report through 082-443535. All information will be kept strictly confidential. SESCO would like to reiterate that stealing electricity is a dangerous crime and punishable under section 33(5) of the Electricity Ordinance and punishable with a fine up to RM100,000 or imprisonment of five years or both.