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An open letter to K-Electric

The following is an email  written to the K-Electric leadership this afternoon after suffering from nearly 4 days of no electricity. The letter was quickly responded  by the CEO of KE  .

Dear Sirs,

I hope you’re all well and having a fine Sunday. It’s with great sadness and disillusionment that I report my family is not. I’m an international journalist-turned-PR consultant who moved back to Karachi from Berlin a few years ago because I felt like I could make a difference. Three years later I suffer from deprivation of the basic amenity provided by your company. We have had no power since 5 am on Thursday June 18, 2015. As I write you it is Sunday afternoon 2:35 pm.

My family has spent a grand total of three Sehris and two Aftaris in pre-Edisonian candlelit primitivity, because our small-scale generator cannot handle that much power. I assure you it’s not romantic. Why, you ask? My grandparents are old, having crossed 80 years of age and sick. My mother has anemia and hypoglycemia. My younger brother and I simply do not feel we should suffer at the hands of incompetent private enterprise, especially when we pay a premium for the product.

Here’s the story: Upon several complaints to the offices and on the helplines we received no real help. There were shoddy attempts at patching up the faulty wires which would restore electricity for an hour or two, but culminate in another breakdown. (We’ve had electricity for a little over an hour now, but who knows how long that will last.)

However, the behavior of your “professionals” yesterday was preposterous. When we complained about the power situation we were told that the workers were fainting because of the heat and because they were fasting and we should be more sympathetic to their plight. Of course, my mother offered a few efficiency solutions: how about recruiting the several non-Muslims who don’t fast, make your employees work shorter shifts, hire more trained staff, increase training. I would have imagined your excellent corporation to have thought of those, but sometimes all you need is a little old angry lady. At any rate, the gentleman at the K Electric offices told her that other workers wouldn’t be able to make it to our area because they don’t know the directions!

I don’t fault your company for the faulty wires or even the breakdown, but this incompetent, and even rude, treatment from your service, as well as

your technical, professionals is entirely unacceptable.

While researching K Electric leadership, I read through all your impressive profiles. And, feel sorry that the staff below you aren’t holding up the excellence that represents you all and the Abraaj Group.

In the end, I’m grateful to K Electric for helping me understand the dilemma of the people who live differently from us. After experiencing three days of this nightmare, watching my loved ones suffer, I understand why there is so much violence and crime in this city, without of course condoning it.

I look forward to hearing from one of you soon.

My very best,

Hani Yousuf



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