STATE-RUN National Electrification Administration (NEA) said on Friday that it intervened in the management and operation of Palawan Electric Cooperative (Paleco) to help resolve the province’s power problems.
NEA Administrator Edgardo R. Masongsong issued an order on Dec. 10 designating engineer Nelson Lalas as project supervisor and acting general manager of Paleco “effective immediately,” the agency said in a statement.
“In the exigency of the service and pursuant to Sections 4 (e) and (j) of Presidential Decree No. 269 as amended by Section 5 of R.A. 10531, Engr. Lalas is hereby designated as Project Supervisor/Acting General Manager of Palawan Electric Cooperative (Paleco) effective immediately,” the NEA office order stated.
Mr. Lalas’ designation will cease upon the appointment of a regular general manager, which is subject to NEA confirmation.
As indicated in the order, he will manage the day-to-day operations of Paleco to ensure the efficient delivery of electric service to its consumers.
He is also authorized to approve or disapprove board resolutions in consultation with concerned departments in the agency, and to sign or countersign checks, withdrawal slips, and other banking transactions, as well as perform other tasks that may be assigned.
The NEA intervention comes a month after President Rodrigo R. Duterte issued a warning to local officials to solve the energy issues in Palawan. He gave Paleco until the end of the year to address the frequent brownouts or he will find a new electricity provider for Palawan.
Paleco is the lone power distributor for Puerto Princesa City and 18 municipalities, serving 137,277 consumers or 57% of the 240,700 potential connections as of June 2018.
“We will exercise the agency’s inherent jurisdiction over Paleco as it has the technical capability to turn things around in Palawan and for Palawan member-consumer-owners,” Mr. Masongsong said.
NEA supervises 121 electric cooperatives as called for by Republic Act 10531, or the National Electrification Administration Reform Act of 2013. — Victor V. Saulon