The Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) said on Saturday it is immediately suspending all disconnection activities in its franchise area until April 15, 2021.
This was the distribution utility's response following Malacanang's announcement of placing the National Capital Region, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Rizal under a week-long Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) beginning March 29 up to April 4, 2021.
“Cognizant of the plight of our customers amid these challenging times brought about by the pandemic and in support of the government’s effort to manage the transmission of Covid-19, we commit to put on hold all disconnection activities until April 15 2021,” Ferdinand Geluz, Meralco FVP and Chief Commercial Officer, said in statement.
“We hope this measure will contribute to easing the burden of our customers and provide enough relief and time for them to settle their bills.
In an earlier statement, Meralco assured it will continue vital operations such as meter reading following the order of the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) and will also continue to work round the clock to serve its customers.
Meralco encouraged customers to send a personal message (PM) via Facebook Messenger, Twitter or call its 16211 hotline before going to Meralco business centers, which will be on skeleton force, for any inquiries and concerns on billing and payments as a precaution to the rising number of COVID-19 cases.
The distribution utility has announced that its business centers will remain open to accept payments, applications and customer assistance.
Business hours will be from 7am to 3pm on skeleton workforce in compliance to IATF guidelines from Monday to Friday and 7am to 12pm on Saturdays. Their centers will be closed from April 1 to 3 in observance of Maundy Thursday to Black Saturday.
Electric meter reading and delivery of bills will still continue during this time, with Meralco personnel working under the strict health guidelines of the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF).
“Meralco business operations, including meter reading activities, will continue despite stricter quarantine measures,” said Geluz.
“Rest assured there will be strict implementation of health protocols in order to safeguard the health and safety of both customers and our personnel. This will ensure that actual consumption for the month will be billed accordingly.”
“Meralco crews will also continue to be on standby 24/7 to respond to any emergencies and reports.”