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The Palawan Electric Cooperative (PALECO) is appealing to the National Electrification Administration (NEA) to fast-track the completion of the final stage of its candidate evaluation process for general manager so it can hire additional manpower to support its operations.

PALECO, which has been without a general manager since 2018, is one of the electric cooperatives in the country for which NEA has not yet finished the final stage of its candidate evaluation process. Former general manager Ric Zambales left the post vacant after retiring in the same year.

Board of Directors (BOD) chair Jeffrey Tan-Endriga said that the absence of a general manager limits some actions of the electric cooperative, such as hiring additional manpower.

He cannot determine yet how many personnel PALECO should have hired since 2018 and the number needed in each department as it needs to undergo an evaluation this September after the implementation of reorganization.

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“That’s our problem, kulang tayo ng manpower. Only GM can appoint and not OIC. So we are appealing to NEA to release the result of the evaluation,” Endriga said in a text message.

“Di ko pa masabi kung ilan kasi nasa probationary period pa mga employees dahil sa ginawang reorg this year. This month may evaluation na gagawin para malaman anong changes or adjustments gagawin, doon natin malaman ilan personnel pa kailangan i-hire based sa evaluation,” he added.

Since 2018, various acting general managers (AGMs) sent by NEA and officers-in-charge GM have been in charge of overseeing the management and staff of PALECO.

NEA deputy administrator for Electric Cooperative Management Services, Atty. Omar Mayo, said in a text message that he had issued a memo for the conduct of the final interview with the NEA Board of Administrators (BOA).

He also said that it is likely that the results of the evaluation will be sent to electric cooperatives, including PALECO, before the end of the year.

“Almost done—I just signed the memo to the Corporate Board Secretary with all qualified GM candidates (for PALECO and other electric cooperatives) listed for final interview with the NEA Board of Administrators,” Mayo said.

The electric cooperative has three candidates for the position, namely Engr. Allan Cruz, Engr. Rez Contrivida, and Engr. Gonzalo Ong.

However, Endriga is uncertain if Ong will be included in the last stage of evaluation due to concerns about his credentials.

“It was deferred last time due to some issues and concerns about Engr. Ong’s credentials. Until now, wala pang sched ng final interview from NEA BOA, because after this, they will inform the PALECO board who are qualified for the position of GM, and we will select among the qualified applicants,” Endriga said.

As per memorandum no. 2021-56, only the applicant who obtained the highest passing score in the final interview of the NEA Board shall be appointed by the NEA Board as General Manager and forwarded to the EC for acceptance pursuant to NEA Memorandum No. 2021-55, “Revised Policy on the Selection, Hiring, Termination of Service/Suspension for General Managers of Electric Cooperatives (4th Revision)”.

The memorandum contains the revised policy guidelines on the conduct of examinations and interviews for applicants to the position of general managers of electric cooperatives, amending NEA memorandum no. 2018-004 on January 17, 2018.


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is one of the senior reporters of Palawan News. She covers agriculture, business, and different feature stories. Her interests are collecting empty bottles, aesthetic earrings, and anything that is color yellow.