Kenya Power sets August deadline for token meters upgrade

Kenya Power CEO, Joseph Siror speaks during the launch of the media campaign dubbed ‘Update Token Meter Yako’, on June 12, 2024. 

Photo credit: Lucy Wanjiru | Nation Media Group

Kenyans have until August 31 to update their prepaid meters as part of a campaign by Kenya Power targeting 7.4 million customers.

The update is part of an ongoing global exercise that targets all prepaid meters that use the Standard Transfer Specification (STS) - a universal method to transfer tokens to prepaid meters while ensuring the security of generated tokens.

“All prepaid meters that will not have been updated by the deadline will stop accepting the tokens after the deadline date,” said Kenya Power Managing Director Joseph Siror during the launch of the campaign on Wednesday.

The utility said that to update their meters, customers will receive 2 codes from Kenya Power via SMS free of charge. The SMS will include a reset code and an update code along with instructions on how to key in the codes.

“Customers will receive two codes from Kenya Power when they purchase tokens. They will be required to key the codes to their meter following the steps indicated in the SMS before loading the new token. In other instances, the company will send the codes directly to the customers who haven’t purchased tokens to notify them to update their meters. The process is simple and free,” said Dr Siror.

The utility firm has however warned customers who had purchased tokens to load their tokens before upgrading their meters. All tokens that had been purchased before the upgrade will be rendered invalid after the exercise, said Kenya Power.

Prepaid customers form the majority of Kenya Power’s customers. The utility had 9.53 million customers by February this year, out of which 7.4 million, which translates to 77.6 percent of total customers, were on postpaid.

Kenya Power has however been seeking to transition most of its customers to prepaid meters, as part of efforts to seal revenue leakage and cut the cost of deploying meter readers.

The firm recently said it will stop connecting rural customers with postpaid meters, even as it seeks to transition to smart meters in the long term.

“All rural customers will be on the prepaid metering system and will be transitioned to smart metering in the long term,” says the utility in its latest annual report.

The shift to prepaid meters enables the company to collect revenue upfront, coming at a time when it is facing a rapid rise in electricity defaults primarily from postpaid customers who are struggling with increasing prices.

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