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Customers stumped by inflated water bills, wrong readings

8 Oct 2019

Water bills mix-up with wrong readings and inflated figures has left many customers baffled. According to subscribers, the latest water bills from Diam are coming with unjustified and unreasonably inflated amounts – either by wrong meter readings or errors – leaving them angry. 

“The average monthly water bill amount has jumped from around RO14 to RO275. I cleared my water bill before I went on leave in August. But in September, I was shocked to see a bill of RO275. Also, a notice on our building stated that if we don’t clear our bills, water supply would be disconnected,” said Prabhakar Bhandarkar, a Ruwi resident. 

He said he sensed that meter reading was not done correctly and so approached OIFC for a clarification.  

“When I complained at OIFC I was asked to approach Diam  which manages the billing system. After waiting in queue for almost an hour at the Diam office, I was told that the bill was generated based on average reading and not actual.” 

For some, the bill has gone up to RO1,500. “We had to complain after we got a bill of RO1,500. This is a regular issue. Something needs to be done,” said D Shenoy, a Muscat resident. 

Fuad al Farsi, an Amerat resident who moved into her new house a year ago, said her average water bill was below RO10 but the latest bill issued shows the amount as RO200. “For one year after I moved into my house, the bill was less than RO10 and now my latest bill is RO200. Even if that bill is for two months, I am sure my consumption can’t be this high to warrant such a big bill,” she said.  

OIFC officials too told her that the issue can only be dealt with at the Diam office. When contacted by Muscat Daily, officials from OIFC and Diam said they are aware of the problem and subscribers with such problems need to visit the Diam office for rectification. “There have been a number of complaints about this issue. People are advised to visit Diam’s head office with exact reading of the water meters personally,” a Diam official said.  

Diam cuts postal water bills  

Muscat – In a separate development, Diam stated that it will not send water bills through post from this month. 

“We will stop sending any water bills through post to encourage people to register for our e-services through www.diam.om,” an official from Diam told Muscat Daily. 

Subscribers can get their monthly bills online and can also access other services related to the account via the website, he added. 

“We aim to make it easier for people to access our services. In the future, we are planning to receive only online payments,” said the official.  

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