PANAY Electric Co., Inc. (PECO) said it will “immediately “ ask the Supreme Court to reconsider its decision to block the implementation of a local court’s judgment that stopped Iloilo City’s new distribution utility from taking over the company’s assets.

In a statement on Friday, PECO said it had been informed of the High Court’s issuance of a temporary restraining order (TRO) provisionally stopping the implementation of the Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Mandaluyong City’s judgment against the expropriation of assets by More Electric and Power Corp., the new franchise owner.

PECO, which has been distributing power in Iloilo City for 95 years, said it has yet to receive a copy of the Supreme Court court order, but noted that More has received its copy.

PECO called the ruling a “surprising development” considering that the Supreme Court had previously denied More’s application for TRO.

“In any case, what is clear is the Supreme Court has not yet resolved the issue of constitutionality of the expropriation. That remains a prejudicial question that prevents the continuation of the expropriation proceedings,” it said.

PECO said the Dec. 3 TRO should not be allowed to affect the proceedings at the Iloilo RTC.

“For one, [More] has not questioned the suspension of proceedings by the Iloilo court with either the Court of Appeals or the Supreme Court. The RTC Iloilo is not a party in the current case now pending with the Supreme Court,” it said.

“Moreover, a TRO can only restrain an act that has not yet been accomplished. It cannot mandate the performance of an act, such as the issuance of a writ of possession or continuation of expropriation proceedings,” it added. — Victor V. Saulon