Consumer group slams NGCP

Consumer group slams NGCP

The National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) should have learned its lesson from an old adage that "those who cannot remember the past, are condemned to repeat it," consumer group Power Watch Negros said Monday, January 8.

On April 27, 28, and 29, 2023, consumers in Western Visayas were perturbed by a widespread blackout.

Investigations revealed that the system disturbance was triggered by a generation tripping. NGCP said in a statement that it is tirelessly working to determine the root cause of this tripping and to provide a universal solution to restore and stabilize the supply chain.

The power outage happened again in Iloilo City and neighboring areas recently, an ominous greeting for the new year.

NGCP, in a statement dated January 5, 2024, justified that its mandate is confined to the transmission of power from producers to the grid connected to all areas of the country.

As the transmission service provider, NGCP can only give an overview of the current supply and demand situation and endeavor to dispatch any and all available supply. It cannot intervene on matters concerning power generation, it said.

Power Watch Negros secretary-general Wennie Sancho said that the consumers in Panay had suffered terrible inconveniences, depriving them of their quality of life due to the ineffeciency of NGCP.

Sancho added that NGCP failed in its mandate as a system protector because it was not able to avert the system from collapsing.

NGCP should explain this to the consumers. This may happen again in the future, he added.

“As the francise holder and transmission service provider, NGCP is in charge of operating, maintaining and developing the country's state-owned power grid. NGCP also controls the supply and demand of power by determining the power mix through the selection of power plants to put online. It gives the signal to power plants to produce power, as power plants will only produce power or feed their power to the transmission grid, when directed by the NGCP. Therefore, it is not true that the NGCP cannot intervene on matters concerning power generation as alleged in its statement and that its function allegedly, is confined to power transmission. It must be noted that power restoration, after the frequency disturbance, is dependent on a clearance from NGCP,” he said.

The justification of the NGCP on the power outages in Western Visayas was self-serving, he said.*

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