Warisan pledges to set up energy commission for Sabah

Junz-Wong-parti-warisan-sabah-power-plantPETALING JAYA: Parti Warisan Sabah will set up a state-level energy commission if it wrests Sabah from Barisan Nasional in the next election.

The first thing the party would do is review the ambit of independent power plants (IPPs) and the overall energy situation in the state.

Warisan vice-president Junz Wong said the Sabah Energy Commission could operate under the state and not Putrajaya, effectively overriding the national Energy Commission, which currently plays the role of regulator in energy matters in Peninsular Malaysia and Sabah.

The Likas assemblyman said this would allow Sabahans to have full control of their state’s energy needs, and no longer have to rely on the “kindness” of the federal government and IPPs.

Pointing out that Sarawak had its own Electrical Inspectorate Unit, he said: “If Sarawak can have its own state regulatory body, there is no reason why Sabah cannot have the same.

“Having our own energy body is in line with the aspirations of Sabahans to chart our own path,” he said in a press statement today.

Wong said the state commission would review all IPP contracts which were lopsided and did not benefit Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd (SESB), the distributor of power in the state.

It would also review Sabah’s energy situation and allocate resources accordingly where it was most needed, without having to refer to Putrajaya, he added.

“We will also get SESB back for Sabahans as the company rightly belongs to Sabahans,” he said of the company which is now 80% owned by Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB) and 20% by the state.

He added that SESB would then be placed under the state government to be run entirely by Sabahans.

“At the same time, we will also see how electricity tariffs can be brought down, through negotiations with industry players like Petronas.”
“One thing we are looking at is proposing to Petronas that they pay for the fuel/gas grant to SESB.”

Wong added that a Warisan government would also establish a special commission to look into ways of curbing leakages and wastage, to lower electricity tariffs and enhance service delivery.

He said the commission would also investigate previous instances of leakages and wastage in the state’s energy industry, and track down those responsible so they could “face the music”.

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