THERE have been urgent calls for an immediate end to the political impasse at Stormont, with many local households facing yet another hike in their bills next month.
As the cost of living crisis continues unabated, tens of thousands of households across Fermanagh are set to see their electricity bills rise by over a quarter from next month.
Power NI recently announced its prices will be going up by 27.5 percent from July 1st for domestic customers. The electricity provider has said this will amount to a rise of almost £4 a week for a typical household.
The company said the increase was due to “sustained unparalleled price increases witnessed in the wholesale energy markets.”
“We work hard to keep our prices as low as possible and have absorbed costs for as long as we can,” said director of customer solutions, William Steele.
“Regrettably, geopolitical factors outside our control, have resulted in prolonged high costs in the international wholesale energy markets.
“Like other suppliers we have no choice but to pay these increased costs, which feed into the price of wholesale electricity and have a knock-on effect on tariffs.”
Local MLA Jemma Dolan said there was £420 million in household support waiting to be spent by Stormont, but which was couldn’t be distributed due to the current stalemate.
“People are really struggling to pay their bills and put food on the table,” said Ms Dolan. “We need urgent action right now.
“Now is not the time for political games by the DUP. Along with ourselves [Sinn Féin], the Alliance Party, the UUP and the SDLP are ready to work together for the betterment of all.”
She added, “The announcement of another 27.5 percent hike in Power NI prices is yet another huge blow for people and will only add to the pressures they are facing.
“Workers and families are struggling. They need our help now, and we need an Executive up and running now to deal with the cost-of-living crisis.
“The DUP need to stop blocking the formation of an Executive, so we can give people that help right away.”
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