Customer service for Isle of Man Energy will be dealt with by 26 staff members in Glasgow who will also be answering calls for Jersey and Guernsey.

That’s according to the former Chair of the Office For Fair Trading, John Wannenburgh, who revealed the news in Tynwald this week.

Isle of Man Energy is part of the Island Energy Group which supplies energy to Guernsey and Jersey as well as the Isle of Man.

It comes after the company’s decision to close the counter service earlier this month.

Mr Wannenburgh said: ‘The OFT has no powers to make them open a physical office or counter to answer any queries .

‘As long as they are operating within their framework they are perfectly entitled to do what they want.

‘If they fall short of answering customers expectations then of course we can get involved, but we cannot mandate what they must do.

He added: ‘Is 26 people enough for 40,000 customers, because it is not just our customers here but also in Jersey and Guernsey, of course, I would say no.

‘I have seen very little to say that the company’s decision to close the counter has been the right one, perhaps if they were not a monopoly, their actions would have been very different.’

Onchan MHK, Rob Callister said that he has had quite a few constituents contacting him saying that island energy is simply not answering the phones, an issue that Mr Wannenburgh said that he was aware of.

It comes at a time when the company has been experiencing ongoing billing issues.

Mr Wannenburgh told his colleagues in Tynwald: ‘Everybody in this house will know that we have had billing issues for the last year and we had recorded approximately 600, but we have resolved 95% of those.

Whilst Isle of Man Energy insists that its billing issues have been resolved, Mr Wannenburgh said that he is not convinced.

He said that the OFT has not received any written assurance that the billing issues have been resolved.

‘The Chief Executive Officer has said that their billing system is up to speed and working well, I dispute that, customers dispute that’, he said.

‘We did receive advice from their legal council to say that written assurance would be forthcoming.

David Ashford, Douglas North MHK, said that the billing issues were far from over, citing a constituent who last month received two letters on the same day.

One of the letters said that she had an overdue balance of £342.38, and another saying she had an overdue balance of £123.83, and then four days later got a bill which said that she was £30,533.70 in credit.

When she tried to claim the credit she did not get it, but the following day received another bill which said that she owed £635.05.

Customers who are having difficulties with the company are advised to get in touch with the Office for Fair Trading.