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Thank you Shoreline

Kolofo'ou,Tongatapu,Tonga

Editor,

There has been so much debate and heavy criticism of how Shoreline Power has been opreating as the monopoly supplier of power for the country. Mele Lulu Payne has stated that Tonga is in deep trouble when she refers to the Shoreline and the arrangements to bring the power generation and distribution back to the government.

Mele, I do not understand why you call Tonga is in deep trouble when the power supply is very stable and reliable and you did not call the time when there were very frequent unplanned power shut down, many black outs and few accidents that caused deaths to people, when the power generation and distribution was with the governement (TEPB) deep trouble? When the country had real power supply problem, the businesses were not able to operate and function properly as computers were affected, air condition units were broken down, water supplies were stopped and offices simply had to send staff home when every day there was a power shut down during office hours. This is the reality of what happened to the power supply prior to privatising of it by Shoreline. Because the country and especially the commercial sector was badly affected by the national problem of unreliable power supply, the Crown Prince who is now the King, stepped up and rescued the power supply of the country. He formed his own company, arranged his own funds, bought his own power generators, build his own generating shed, hired his own staff and generated the power for Tongatapu. Shoreline did not use the government’s generators or sheds or funds, shoreline was on its own. This shows clearly that the government’s power generators were not good enough for the job and worth nothing.

Since Shoreline power has generated and distributed power for Tongatapu, there has been minimal power shut down and more importantly, all power shut downs were pre-announced for the best interest of the customers. Shoreline has employed a lot of Tongan people and people of Tongatapu can agree with me that Shoreline distribution staff has demonstrated excellent working attitude and standards in their job as we see them working long hours in replacing and upgrading worn out power distribution infrastructure with high quality poles and wires, using high quality equipments, vehicles and applicances. They even trim trees that are risks to damaging the power poles and wires, and they do this through out the year and not only in hurricane season. Power supply is in a very reliable standard and I owe Shoreline my appreciation for their effort. I am quite happy to pay for my power bills in knowing that there will be electricity every day and night. I will complain when there will be frequent power shut down and interrupted power supply during working hours.

I do not understand why people are not happy with high salaries of Shoreline executives when they do not have anything to do with that. For the fact that Shoreline power is a private company means it is no different from the shop of Lu’isa Uata in town. When someone buys something from Uata’s shop, he or she does not tell Uata this is how I want you to spend the money I gave you, because I buy from your shop you should listen to me and do as I tell you to do. I hear a lot of heavy criticisms about the Shoreline, and have pity on Shoreline, for they are doing excellent job in maintaining reliable power supply for the country and yet people are screaming because they do not agree that their directors should be paid so high which has nothing to do with them. That is all Shoreline’s business to pay attractive salaries to their directors even pay for private expenses of their directors (like any of other private businesses) for the business is their own and the objective of having own private business is to earn own living from it and so be it with Shoreline or Uata or any other private business.

Respectfully,

Taasi Holiday

taasi_hol [at] yahoo [dot] com [dot] au