21st December , 2016
As stipulated in its mandate, the Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) has embarked on verification of electricity meters in a bid to ensure consumer protection and fair trade.
This is the latest intervention in the area of measurements that came as a result of the frequent complaints by the consumers of electricity meters in regard to billing.
UNBS convened a number of meetings with the stakeholders in the drafting of the enabling regulation until 2015 when it was enacted. The applicable regulation is the Statutory Instruments 2015 No.69 Weights and Measures (Electricity meters) Rules, 2015. UNBS acquired three testing equipment through TradeMark East Africa (TMEA) which supplied them in the current Quality Infrastructure and Standards Program (QUISP) project funded by the Swedish Government. Implementation commenced in July 2016.
Utility companies have so far submitted 3,000 samples for accuracy testing, private importers are submitting models for pattern Approval and also participation in factory Acceptance Test (FAT). Since implementation, the exercise has proved the dire need out there for UNBS interventions for purposes of consumer protection and also, in the long run, it will reduce power losses on the network. UNBS and Electricity Regulatory Authority (ERA) have a close collaboration in implementing the requirements of the law. The intervention of UNBS is to ensure fair trade in the billing of power and the correct power measuring meters are those with a UNBS verification sticker. Just as fuel pumps bear verification stickers indicating the verification status, the electricity consumers and utility companies are called upon to observe this requirement.
As the implementation deepens, UNBS has the following plans among others:
More targeted stakeholders’ engagement
John Paul Musiimami
Manager Legal Metrology
UGANDA NATIONAL BUREAU OF STANDARDS
Plot 2 – 12, Bypass Link, Bweyogerere Industrial & Business Park, Kyaliwajala Road,
P.O Box 6329 Kampala, Uganda
Telephone: 0417 – 333 250, 0417 – 333 251, 0417 – 333 252,
Toll-free 0800 133 133.