ESCOM to roll out reconfiguration of electricity prepaid meters from June 1 

In compliance with new international requirements for transfer of electricity prepayment tokens, Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (ESCOM) will from June 1 launch a Token Identifier (TID) project that will reconfigure all prepaid meters for customers.

Announcing the development on Tuesday 16th May 2023 in Blantyre, ESCOM’s Chief Operations Officer, Maxwell Mulimakwenda emphasised that every country in the world is being required to carry out this system upgrade, saying the last operation was done in 1993.

He said TID has a lifespan of 31.9 years and the current security lifespan will expire on November 24, 2024 — thus ESCOM is rolling out the exercise well in advance in order to service all 537,000 prepaid meters on the network.

From June 1, customers should expect to receive three once-off tokens once they replenish their units. The first two will be key change tokens and the third will be the normal electricity units token.


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Meanwhile, Mulimakwenda also emphasized that customers “must load into their meters all tokens of units bought prior to the issue of a key change token before entering the key change tokens” because the reconfigured meter shall reject all units that were bought prior to entering Key Change Tokens and that ESCOM shall not be held liable for the loss of these units.

“Customers must ensure that their meter is reconfigured by entering the Key Change Tokens in the rightful order as advised on the receipt slip of the notification SMS from all vending platforms e.g. Mpamba, Airtel Money or Bank accounts.

“After successful completion of the Key Change process, customers will thereafter continue to receive one token for units that will be purchased,” he said.

He further explained that ESCOM’s prepaid meters use a secure communication protocol to transfer information from the point of sale (POS) vending point to the meter which is call Standard Transfer Specification, saying the “20-digit token that customers receive has inbuilt unique security code thus named as Token Identifier — which is time stamped”.

“After 24th November 2024, meters that have not been rolled over will not accept any new token and that the next TID rollover process will take place in 2045.” Mulimakwenda also announced that the rollout process will be done in a controlled program to run concurrently in all the four regions of the South, East, Central and North

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