KCCI announces to boycott Nepra’s public hearings

Staff Reporter BOL News

28th Sep, 2021. 08:30 pm

KARACHI: The Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) has announced to boycott the public hearings being organised by the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) on September 29 and 30, 2021 as it has been observed that the regulator has not been providing the adequate opportunity to share opinion and give suggestions neither to the KCCI nor to the majority of interveners, a statement said on Tuesday.

KCCI president Muhammad Idrees recalled the proceedings of the last public hearing held on September 2, 2021, and said during the hearing, the Nepra chairman acted arrogantly, indecently and carried out the proceedings with an anti-business-like attitude, which was widely protested by the participants who boycotted the hearing.

“There was no patience on [the] part of [the] Nepra chairman to listen to the very valid points put forward by the interveners. When an intervener who is considered as an expert on energy matters in Karachi, was presenting some very important technical points, he was interrupted to such an extent that the Zoom connection was shut off on the orders of [the] Nepra chairman,” he added.

“To resolve this issue, [the] KCCI demanded to re-conduct the hearing but the Nepra registrar categorically refused by giving lame excuses; hence, we felt it necessary to bring this issue to the notice of Federal Minister for Energy Hammad Azhar through a letter but unfortunately no response was received from his office,” he added.

“When the last public hearing stood unconcluded, how could Nepra set stage for holding the next public hearings on other subjects?” He asked, adding that the purpose for holding these cosmetic hearings was to only appease K-Electric, as no attention was being paid to the concerns, opinions and suggestions being given by all other stakeholders and it seems that the decisions were already taken before the hearing.

Idrees urged Prime Minister Imran Khan and Federal Minister for Energy Hammad Azhar to take strict notice of the Nepra’s highhandedness and order the regulator to refrain from holding any public hearing on any other subject until the hearing held on September 2, 2021 is declared as “null and void” and a fresh date is announced for holding this particular hearing again, as it remains unconcluded.

He also appealed to all the stakeholders and interveners to exhibit total unity by boycotting the next public hearings of Nepra on September 29 and 30, 2021.

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