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Wennie Sancho

Letters for Councilor Paglumotan (Last of 2 Parts)

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Dear Councilor Paglumotan;

Greetings from Power Watch-Negros!

We would like to bring to the attention of your Committee the issue on the proposed Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) between the Central Negros Cooperative (CENECO) and Aboitiz Power Corporation (Aboitiz). This MOA if finally signed by both parties, will ultimately lead to the privatization of CENECO, an electric cooperative in which we, the consumers are presumed to be the collective owners. This MOA was initiated by the CENECO Board of Directors without sufficient consultations with the majority of CENECO consumers, the CENECO Board of Directors failed to disseminate to the consumers what would be the impact of this MOA on the policy direction of CENECO.

Letters for Councilor Paglumotan

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Dear Councilor Paglumotan!

Water Watch, which is an alliance of water consumers in Bacolod City would like to reiterate our vehement opposition against the proposed Bulk Water Supply project of BACIWA on the ground that this will lead to the privatization of BACIWA. This public water utility is presumed to be owned collectively by all BACIWA consumers.

A CENECO Sell - Out?

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Hidden from the purview of the CENECO consumers, a proposed Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) between the Central Negros Electric Cooperative and Aboitiz Power Corporation has been drafted and will soon be signed if we as CENECO consumers shall not register our vehement opposition against the privatization of CENECO as an electric cooperative, that belongs to us. Some of the salient features of this Agreement are the following:

Power Industry the Most Profitable Sector

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Whenever there is brownout, especially when this happens regularly, people say, here we go again, soon there will be an increase in the charges of our electric rates! Giving credence to this statement is the worsening power crisis all over the country.

In Bacolod City, the Central Negros Electric Cooperative (CENECO) has to bear the brunt of criticism during brownout. Not a few observers said that irregular power supply does not only give rise to irritation in haggling brownout pay but thievery and pilferages are also paid for by all consumers, regardless of their pattern or level of consumption, leading others to believe that the energy or power of CENECO is dimming. We are reminding the CENECO Board of Directors in the hope that brighter light will be shed on the causes and effects of the lack of power and rate increases as the basis for better and more rational decisions concerning the problems and prospects of power or energy relevant to the needs and expectations of the consumers.

Power Watch Negros (NIR)

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We have noted that most electric cooperatives in Negros were haunted by allegations and accusations of corruptions, overpricing, dishonesty, shady business deals and exorbitant expenses and allowances of the Board of Directors and top management officials, among others. The worst of these stories came from the grape vines, but there were cases of officers being disqualified or dismissed due to anomalies.

These perceived malpractices had marred the name and leadership of electric cooperatives. There are electric cooperatives that operate with ulterior motives and are involved in multifarious activities alleged to be anomalous and contrary to the welfare and interests of the electric consumers. It is a disgrace to the honorable concept of cooperativism. Electric cooperatives no longer belong to the majority of the people who are its members. It is controlled by a few to advance their political and business agenda.