NEA task force takes over Zamcelco operations

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THE NATIONAL Electrification Administration (NEA) has formed a task force that took over the operation and management of the financially-ill Zamboanga City Electric Cooperative (Zamcelco) starting last week. The team, named Task Force Duterte Zamboanga City Power is composed of seven general managers (GM) of electric cooperatives from different parts of the country. One of them, Adelmon P. Laput, Zamboanga del Norte Electric Cooperative (Zaneco) GM and appointed executive officer of the group, told the media that they will temporarily handle operations while Zamcelco’s current board will focus on the Investment Management Contract (IMC). “We will be holding the operation and the management of the Zamcelco for three months only until the winning bidder [of the IMC] will be awarded,” he said. Last month, Manila Electric Co.-Comstech Integration Alliance, Inc. (Meralco-Comstech) backed out from the IMC. Records from Zamcelco show that the cooperative has about P2 billion in total debts. This includes dues to NEA, P373 million; Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management, P28 million; Mapalad Power Corp., P2 million; Western Mindanao Power Corp., P197 million; San Miguel Consolidated Power Corp., P374 million; and Infinity Power, P212 million. Zamcelco President Hji. Omar A. Sahi, in a radio interview, said the current board is “on standby waiting for the schedule of bids submission on Aug. 30.” He added, “After the approval of the IMC, a transition will be followed and allow the new management to take over.” — Albert F. Arcilla