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What you need to know about pre-paid electricity

VEREENIGING. – The service provider tasked with vending pre-paid vouchers for electricity for Emfuleni Municipality is Sanduela Technology.
A flood of ire has poured in from consumers of pre-paid electricity about the differing number of units they receive for the same amount of money spent, along with queries about direct purchasing of electricity via the web or cell-phone. The following explains what services are offered and what the new tariffs are.
Sandulela Technology also provides internet and cell phone based purchase of electricity on WWW.EMFULENI24.COM (or on WWW.BUYELEC24.COM).
Because much of the data in respect of location of electricity meters, consumers and consumer addresses is not up to date an initiative has been launched by Sandulela Technology to update this.
During the course of the next couple of weeks all consumers will be required to enter their addresses and contact numbers via the internet (WWW.EMFULENI24.COM) or from certain major vending points which will be advertised, or from the rates halls. Those who do not have access to internet may sms their meter number to 32904 and they will be phoned back to update the records. A time limit will be imposed for all consumers to have done this whereafter voucher purchases for the relevant meters will be temporarily suspended until the  consumers’ details have been updated.
Electricity cards will be issued to all consumers who wish to purchase from retail vending points. These will be issued at a nominal charge of R5 taken from the next purchase of electricity. The old electricity cards will be discontinued.
Although these measures will result in a slight inconvenience the outcome will result in a better managed service which is more efficient ΓÇô specifically to limit increases and eliminate electricity theft and bypassed meters.
- Tariffs ΓÇô the new pricing structure as from July 1
In November 2010 the National Energy Regulator of South Africa approved the guideline increase of 20.38% for municipalities for the 2011/2012 financial year.
* Subsequently in June 2011 NERSA approved the increase applied for by Emfuleni (inclusive of VAT) as follows:
- High season ΓÇô winter (until August 30)
Within any given calendar month (August 1 to 31 consumers will be charged per unit (unit = 1 kilowatt hour):-
91.405 cents per unit for each of the first 50 units they purchase that month ΓÇô 3.4% increase.
103.01 cents per unit for each of the next 300 units they purchase that month ΓÇô 16.61 increase.
137.84 cents per unit for each of the next 250 units they purchase that month -  56.03 % increase.
165.40 cents per unit for each additional unit they purchase during that month ΓÇô 33.7% increase.
These rates are applicable from the beginning of September as this is regarded as low season.
- Examples
As per the previous pricing the first R700 spent on electricity would have bought you 792 units.
In terms of the new pricing structure you would receive 600 units.
Alternately you would pay R1,017-57 for the same 792 units , a 45% increase.
R1500 was an average amount spent on electricity for a typical family three-bedroom family home based on the old pricing (1,698 units).
R1 925.22 would be the cost for the same number of units at the new rate (28% increase).
- Low season ΓÇô summer (from September 1)
Within any given calendar month (August 1 to 31) consumers will be charged per unit (unit = 1 kilowatt hour):-
65.28 cents per unit for each of the first 50 units they purchase that month ΓÇô 26% decrease.
73.59 cents per unit for each of the next 300 units they purchase that month ΓÇô 16.7 decrease.
98.45 cents per unit for each of the next 250 units they purchase that month -  11.44 % increase.
118.14 cents per unit for each additional unit they purchase during that month ΓÇô 33.72% increase.
These rates are applicable from the beginning of September as this is regarded as low season.
- Examples
As per the previous pricing the first R700 spent on electricity would have bought you 792 units.
In terms of the new pricing structure you would receive 769 units for R700.
Alternately you would pay R727.17 cents for the same 792
R15 00 was an average amount spent on electricity for a typical family three-bedroom family home based on the old pricing (1,698 units).
R1 797.52 would be the cost for the same number of units at the new rate (19.83% increase).

Source: vaalweekblad.com