DMCI, other IPPs face stiff fine for power deal breach with electric coop in Palawan


PUERTO PRINCESA CITY — The Palawan Electric Cooperative (PALECO) will hold the DMCI Power Corporation (DPC) and other independent power producers (IPPs) responsible for the lingering rotational load shedding problem in this city and the province that violates the Power Supply Agreement (PSA).

Lawyer Raymund Acosta, chairman of the board of directors of the PALECO, said during the 35th Annual General Membership Assembly Meeting (AGMAM) that their legal counsel is now reviewing the sharing agreements signed with the independent power producers, and will impose sanctions on them even in the absence of penalty clauses.

Cynthia Sumagaysay-Del Rosario of the Palawan Alliance for Clean Energy (PACE) said member-consumers have the right to know about the PSAs.

But PALECO hesitated in providing the copy due to the confidentiality clauses in the agreements with the IPPs as discussed in last year’s 34th AGMAM.

The DPC is supposed to provide 25-megawatt of power to PALECO. However, currently, it is only providing 15-megawatt, Del Rosario pointed out.

“They have violated the contract a number of times,” she said, adding that the power shortage is not the wrongdoer of the prolonged outages that now seem regular but the distribution lines of PALECO that are not capable of handling heavy loads.

Hanggang hindi naaayos ang distribution lines hindi mareresolba ang brownout (As long as the distribution lines problem is not resolved, the power outages will not also be resolved),” she said.

According to PALECO General Manager Ric Zambales, the existing power supply of the city and province with all IPPs is 53.7 megawatts, and the total power requirement during peak load is 34 megawatts, which confirms that there is enough power supply contrary to the clamor of many.

Zambales also said that the team of PALECO engineers conducted a study through the Power Supply Reliability Committee (PSRC) which undertook a study or analysis of the distribution system, and recommended the transfer of the DPC plant near the load center to avoid systems loss.

In all the power troubles that Puerto Princesa and Palawan are facing, the provincial government led by Governor Jose Alvarez wants to help and see nothing wrong with it.

Speaking during the 35th AGMAM, the governor assured the city government that whatever help it needs, the provincial government is ready to assist especially on the power crisis.

Walang masama kung magtutulungan ang probinsya at syudad upang gumanda ang buhay ng mga mamamayan (There is nothing wrong if the city and provincial governments will help each other for the benefit of the people),”Alvarez said.

Alvarez, who is known for his pro-development attitude urged Palaweños to unite to achieve progress by being supportive of the programs and projects of the government that are focused on having reliable sources of energy.

Napag-iiwanan na ang Palawan ng northern Mindanao (Palawan is now behind northern Mindanao),” he said.

As a No. 1 Island Destination in the World, Palawan is now among the provinces with an unprecedented influx of tourists, and Alvarez and other local leaders do not want to risk the opportunity.

They fear that without stable power supply, the result could be serious to the tourism industry and other businesses.

Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Carlos Jericho Petilla, who was guest of honor during the AGMAM, said he wants the power problem in the province to be solved in three months’ time.

Petilla is scheduled to meet key officers of the PALECO to assess the problem.

Sa lalong madaling panahon (The soonest possible time), we will resolve the problem on electricity,” the state energy department secretary said.

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