Moresco-2 officials mum on P101-M loan

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Monday, June 30, 2014


RANKING officers of Misamis Oriental II Electric Cooperative, Inc. (Moresco-2) are keeping their mouth shut from commenting on reports that the P101 million loan to the National Electrification Authority (NEA) is “an irresponsible action indicative of serious mismanagement.”

Moresco-2 division supervisor Engr. Roy Balingit, told Sun*Star Cagayan de Oro by phone Sunday afternoon that he would rather not comment on the electric cooperative's 27-kilometer, 69-kilovolt sub-transmission lines project worth P101,862,000.

His colleague, operations head in Gingoog City Engr. Ronnel Canada, also refused to give comment on the proposed emergency capital expenditure.

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This paper tried to reach Moresco-2's general manager Amado Ke-e by phone six times since June 24, however, the calls weren't picked up.

In November 2011, NEA approved the Moresco-2 loan in two installments, with the power utility receiving P51 million in April 2012 and P50 million in January 2013. However, the said application was denied by the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) in its decision promulgated in November 2012 while the management of Moresco-2 had already commenced the project.

Misamis Oriental vice governor Jose Mari Pelaez is pessimistic of the said loan as it might only “give more burdens to the poor member consumers.”

“Prudence in the capital spending should be observed taking into consideration the limited financial resources of Moresco-2, its member-consumers and other feasible options. Rather than constructing the new distribution line, they should have utilized the existing Balingasag-Kinoguitan 69 KV line which is more cost-effective," Pelaez said.

Pelaez sees consumers will be the most affected stakeholder in this project.

"The proposed project will inevitably result in a rate increase on the part of Moresco-2's member consumers. Resourcefulness in terms of money spending must be observed and consistent with the policies of the ERC and the Electric Power Industry Reform Act (Epira)," he added.

Moresco-2 deliberately failed to consider the impact to obtaining the multimillion peso loan on the electricity bills especially of the poor member consumers, Pelaez furthered.

Denied

Pelaez believed that the subject loan will cause irreparable and serious damage to the financial position of the electric cooperative as the loan amount cannot be passed on the consumers pursuant to the decision of the ERC which denied Moresco-2's application of a pass on rate.

The provincial board of Misamis Oriental told Moresco-2 that it could have interconnected with the Sugbongcogon-Kinoguitan line.

"There's already an existing line. Why should they build another one at the expense of the member consumers?" board member Benedict Lagbas said.

The provincial board had asked the NEA to investigate and conduct a comprehensive audit of Moresco-2 for “serious acts of mismanagement.”

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on June 30, 2014.

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