A Scottish National Party member has criticised Scottish and Southern Energy's (SSE) decision to increase gas and electricity prices.
Speaking to the Stornoway Gazette, MP Angus MacNeil said pushing tariffs up by nine per cent on average is "the last thing people need".
He expressed concern for islanders who are already facing fuel poverty and look set to face an extra £100 a year on their energy bills.
"There is a limit to how much people can keep absorbing massive energy price rises like this," Mr MacNeil stated, adding the government needs to "step in and take serious action".
The expert noted that if bills increase, the Treasury will receive large VAT payments and this additional cash should be used to tackle the issue of fuel poverty.
Mr MacNeil added: "The energy market clearly is not working for the consumer and there is now an overwhelming case for an investigation into how the major energy market is operating."
It was suggested the fact Scotland is seeing increasing levels of fuel poverty is "unacceptable", as the nation has plenty of energy sources.
SSE's chief executive Ian Marchant claimed the company had "endeavoured to keep energy bills as low as possible", but faced no alternative other than to increase prices.
A statement from the energy supplier said: "SSE is very sorry about the impact that rising energy costs, along with the rising costs of other essentials, is having on many households."
However, Mr Marchant explained that rises in wholesale costs mean the company can no longer put off a price hike, but "remains committed" to offering fair tariffs to its customers.
The last time SSE increased its prices was in September 2011 and this was then followed by a 4.5 per cent cut in costs in March 2012.
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