CDA paying bill for 20,000 phantom light

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ISLAMABAD: The preliminary findings of an energy audit recently initiated by the Capital Development Authority (CDA) have revealed the agency overestimated the number of streetlights in Islamabad by 20,000.
The CDA has been paying electricity dues through a lump sum arrangement with the Islamabad Electric Supply Company (IESCO) for 65,000 streetlights, but it really has only 45,000. CDA Spokesperson Ramzan Sajid confirmed the audit finding on Sunday.

Sajid said the actual number of streetlights might have been reduced due to “adjustments” and the removal of some streetlights over the years.

However, he ruled out any possible corruption on the part of CDA employees in this massive difference between the actual and official number of streetlights. He justified this by suggesting that the bill for the extra, albeit imaginary, streetlights was going to IESCO and not the CDA.

Sajid said the civic agency was paying around Rs1 billion annually in street light dues, but now the bill would fall by at least Rs0.32 billion.

The CDA launched an energy conservation campaign in October on the directions of the Cabinet Division. One of the steps taken under the campaign was to ascertain the agency’s actual energy requirements, Sajid said.

He said CDA was thinking to move from lump sum payments to a metered system. This would enable the agency to pay only for actual usage. Coupled with energy conservation measures such as alternative switching of streetlights, the metered system might help the CDA reduce its electricity expenditure.


Courtesy: Tribune

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