Sat, 05 Mar 2005

Streetlights running on borrowed power

YOGYAKARTA: Illegally erected streetlights in Yogyakarta and Central Java have caused financial losses of over Rp 100 billion to state-owned power firm PLN and the Central Java Distribution Office, an official has revealed.

Speaking on the sidelines of a seminar on electricity usage earlier this week, deputy head of the office's public relations division Suwondo Kusumo said the problem had been ongoing since 2003.

"The regental administrations concerned erected the lamps but never paid for the electricity," Suwondo said.

Suwondo said that many people assumed streetlight taxes went to PLN, whereas, in fact they go directly to regental administrations.

He said this meant people erected streetlights anywhere they wanted to, without following the correct procedure.

"I regret that we do not have the right to take action against this illegal practice, as this matter is under the auspices of the regional governments," Suwondo said. --JP