Binatikos ng isang consumer group ang Manila Electric Company dahil sa pagbabalik nito sa patong P47 para sa mga magbabayad ng electric bill sa pamamagitan ng kanilang online application.

Ayon sa grupong Konsyumer, dagdag pabigat sa bulsa ng mga customer at hindi kaginhawaan ang “convenience fee.”

“Meralco is the true inconvenience and it never ceases to amaze us with what it can do to consumers. Either you lose hours in queues to pay your bill, or pay through the nose for “convenience”, even though no other utility charges the same when you pay online,” ani Primo Morillo, tagapagsalita ng grupo.

Iginiit ng grupo na kahit idaan sa online banking o electronic wallets ang mga online paying transactions ay wala namang sinisingil na convenience fee.

“There is no reason to charge these fees except greed. And we call on the Energy Regulatory Commission to immediately put a stop to the levying of these fees and to refund those who have already paid,” dagdag ni Morillo.

Ipinaalala rin ng Konsyumer ang ginawang overcharging ng Meralco noong panahon ng ECQ na hanggang ngayon ay palaisipan pa rin daw sa kanilang hanay.

“We will never forget that during a time when unity and selflessness was most needed to defend the country against Covid-19, Meralco shafted consumers with shady computations and added more stress on top of worries about health and job loss.”

Sa hearing ng House Committee on Good Government and Public Accountability nitong Martes, sinabi ni Meralco Senior Vice President Willam Pamintuan na ibabalik na nila ang P47 convenience sa kanilang online paying transactions.

“However, because we have already opened under the GCQ most of our business centers and other payment channels are now available to consumers, the waiver of the P47 was effectively ceased,” ani Pamintuan.

Nilinaw ng opisyal ng kompanya na pansamantala lang nilang inalis ang convenience fee sa mga lugar na nasa ilalim noon ng enhanced community quarantine.

Una nang ipinaliwanag ng Meralco na hindi sila ang nakikinabang na dagdag bayad, kundi ang mga third party provider na dinadaanan ng transaksyon tulad ng PayMaya.