By MUHAMMED S. BAH
Long queues of customers have been seen yesterday, Sunday, 19 June, 2016 at the various cash power outlets in Banjul, Kanifing Municipality and West Coast Region (WCR) unable to buy prepaid electricity due to the lack of network in the NAWEC computer system.
According to some of the customers, this problem has started since Friday, 17 June, when similar long queues were at these same outlets the whole day and which only started selling cash power after 10 pm.
Visiting the main cash power selling point at the NAWEC headquarters at Westfield (former Cooperative), these reporter spoke with some customers who told him that they have spent many hours standing in the queue waiting for it to start moving and which it has not because there was no network on the computer system. Some of the customers who could not wait any longer were seen going home or to their respective destinations.
One Modou Darboe said he came all the way from Faji Kunda where he is residing with the hope that he can buy cash power at NAWEC Westfield since the outlets near his area are not selling.
“We do not have electricity in our home since in the morning and I sent my kids to come and buy cash power as early as 9 am but up till now (4 pm) they still cannot have it, so I had to come All the way from home to see what is going on and was told that the network has gone down,” he revealed.
Mr. Darboe said if the network is not restored back then that means they will spend the night in total darkness.
He said when he came he even found some of his colleagues coming all the way from Brikama to buy cash power but had to go back empty handed as they could not stay there for the whole day.
Another customer, Muhammed Touray, a resident of Brusubi, said he could not buy cash power at his and decided to come to selling point at the Elton station at Kairaba Avenue but ended up at NAWEC headquarters where he found a long queue.
“I really need electricity in my house otherwise I will loss all the perishable food stocked in my refrigerator which is worth more than D3, 000,” he said.
A similar scene was also witnessed in Banjul as the cash power selling points were not functioning due to network problem.
Some of the customers explained that the other alternative to the cash power outlets is QPower facility of QCell but added that here too one cannot buy prepaid power as it is equally affected by the NAWEC network which is said to have gone down.
In the evening, Nawec sent information through the Gamcel line informing it’s customers that the Cash power system is temporarily down. In addition they said, “Nawec engineers are working to resolve the problem soon. Any inconvenience is regretted”.