Despite converting to gas instead of oil to operate generators for power, thus saving on costs, the military administration has doubled the cost of electricity charged to the people in Mon state, Burma. And even after that supply of electricity is irregular.

The ‘Weekly Eleven’ journal recently reported that Moulmein and Thaton electric power stations and other factories in Mon State are operating on natural gas to halve expenses.

The current charge for electricity is 50 Kyat a unit. Earlier it was 25 Kyat per unit. The maintenance cost is 500 Kyat a month over the last three months. But the authorities collect half the amount from its employees.

The electricity supply is irregular to residents. Power is distributed alternatively about a day a week.

“Today is the day we should get electricity. But it has still not been supplied. It will come when we fall asleep,” a resident said. Even the government departments and administrative offices do not receive enough power, though the regime announced that if consumers did not get enough power they should report it.

“The electricity does not come on days we need it. That’s why we operate a generator to get electricity,” a school administrator said.

The military junta had increased electric charges from 2.5 Kyat to 25 Kyat per unit in 2006. Although it collects maintenance costs, they also take money again and again for repairing transformers or transmission lines.

“The authorities collected 5,000 Kyat per house in our quarter and other quarters paid 10,000 Kyat per house to repair a transformer which broke down in the town and to buy a larger transformer,” Mudon resident said.

In Mon State the military government promised to connect the Kanbauk-Myaingkalay gas pipeline in 2000 and assured enough electricity to people after the connection.