By Joann Santiago
MANILA, (PNA) – The Camarines Sur Electric Cooperative III (CASURECO III) was disconnected from the power grid about 12 noon Monday due to unpaid debt to San Miguel Energy Corporation (SMEC) in 2012.
National Electrification Administration (NEA) Public Affairs Director Judith Sebastian, in a text message, said CASURECO III owes SMEC about P102 million.
“(CASURECO III’s) major supplier is SMEC,” she said.
CASURECO III distributes electricity in Iriga City, and the municipalities of Nabua, Bato, Baao, Buhi, Bula and Balatan of the Province of Camarines Sur.
National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) Network Customer Access and Relations head Philip DV Dasalla, in a media orientation spearheaded by the Philippine Independent Power Producers Association (PIPPA) Tuesday, said disconnection of any electric cooperative is not immediate since the cooperative will be informed about this a week before the actual implementation.
He said NGCP only cuts the connection upon the request of a party, normally the supplier and noted that the Department of Energy (DOE) is also informed about the situation.
“We also informed NEA about it so that way they can put a remedy,” he said.
Dasalla said NGCP does not implement a disconnection on Fridays to allow the affected electric cooperative and NEA, among others, to look for solutions.
Since the start of the year, electric cooperatives that experienced disconnection include the Albay Electric Cooperative, Inc (ALECO) due to about P4 billion liabilities to several entities like the Philippine Electricity Market Corp. (PEMC), the National Power Corporation (Napocor) and NEA and the Pantabangan Municipal Electric Services (PAMES) due to liabilities to First Gen Hydro Power Corp. (FGHPC) amounting to about P8.76 million.
The Abra Electric Cooperative (Abreco) also experienced power cut-off earlier this year due to unpaid liabilities amounting to P400 million to various agencies like power supplier Aboitiz Power’s AP Renewables Inc. (APRI) and NGCP.