TWO newly built hawker centres at Jalan Simpang and Jalan Taming Sari in Taiping have finally got power supply.
The delay in connecting supply had earlier frustrated hawkers and the council.
“The council has spent much money to build both centres but had to defer rental collections as the hawkers couldn’t operate without electricity,” said one of the affected hawkers who wished to be identified only as Sham.
Taiping Municipal Council secretary Shahrom Datuk Abdul Malek confirmed that as long as there was no electric supply to both premises, the council had to waive rental collections.
He said the council was supposed to collect between RM180 and RM260 in monthly rental from each tenant.
The new centres in Jalan Simpang and Jalan Taming Sari were supposed to accommodate nine and four hawkers respectively.
Council president Datuk Muhammad Padzil Khalid, when convening a full board meeting recently, said Tenaga Nasional Berhad was at fault.
“It seems that TNB wants power supply connection to new premises to be carried out by contractors chosen by TNB headquarters in Kuala Lumpur and not TNB Ipoh as was the practice in the past.
“This has caused unnecessary delay,” said Muhammad Padzil who is also unhappy that some bulbs at the Jalan Taming Sari hawker centre have gone missing.
Earlier, Muhammad Padzil said at the meeting that the council had to fork out an additional RM2.5mil annually in salary payments for its 673 staff members following the recent move to increase the salary of government employees.
Muhammad Padzil later told reporters that the council could get the additional amount by going after some RM8mil in assessment arrears owed by property owners.