The Jamaica Public Service company, JPS, is assuring customers that the light and power entity is not seeking to pressure customers with the new rate increase that has been granted.

In recent days the Office of Utilities Regulation, OUR, announced it had granted the JPS approval for a 1.4 per cent increase for residential customers.

The announcement has been met with outrage from many customers.

Opposition Spokesman on Energy Phillip Paulwell has also weighed in, describing the move as unconscionable.

Stevian Simmonds reports.

Director of Corporate Communications at the JPS Winsome Callum while speaking with Vernon Derby during At Your Service noted that the increase was not about causing Jamaicans more hardship.

Ms. Callum argued that the increase is not just about the JPS but more importantly about keeping the power on in critical institutions like hospitals and the rest of Jamaica.

She further noted that the OUR’s approval was not an arbitrary increase.

Ms. Callum says a customer who on average pays $5,000 dollars for electricity will be paying $70 extra come October 1.

In the meantime, Ms. Callum says although there’s been a decline in electricity theft, addressing the issue must be a collective responsibility.

The Director of Corporate Communications at the JPS says there was an increase last year.

This Ms. Callum notes may’ve been due to more people being at home and unemployed due to the pandemic.

Winsome Callum, Director of Corporate Communications at the Jamaica Public Service Company.