PALECO to discuss the appeal of PHILRECA opposing the removal of Universal Charge for Missionary Electrification (UC-ME) subsidy as per Rule 10 of DOE DC 2019-01-001


The Palawan Electric Cooperative (PALECO) has designated Engr. Ferdinand Pontillas, current corporate planning manager, as officer-in-charge, following the recall of its acting general manager Engr. Nelson Lalas by the National Electrification Administration (NEA) Friday.

Lalas announced in a press conference his recall order, stating that his position was only temporary. Pontillas will be OIC pending his official designation as a general manager.

“Meron na akong recall order, my recall will be after siguro ng office hours nitong araw nito. Katulad din ng dati, my position here is only temporary.” Lalas said.

NEA designated Lalas in January 2019 when the cooperative was facing intense criticism amidst continuous power service interruptions, including a threat of sanction from President Rodrigo Duterte himself.

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Lalas will return to his office in the National Electrification Administration (NEA) after his recall order.

PALECO chair Jeffrey Tan-Endriga credited Lalas for helping the cooperative resolve its operational problems. He noted that in 2019, PALECO received a sustainability award in 2019 for keeping its system loss percentage under check.

“Considering our geographical situation in Palawan na pahaba, maaari natin masabi na napakaganda ng ating system loss performance dahil ‘yong percentage na nami-maintain natin ay within the capacity, allowed capacity na binibigay ng ERC na 12 percent, naglalaro lang tayo ng 10-11 percent,” he said.

NEA deputy administrator technical services sector Artis Nikki Tortola will act as project supervisor and acting general manager of PALECO. Tortola has endorsed Pontillas to act as OIC to oversee the daily operation of PALECO.

“Malaking bagay ito sa ating operation, unang-una ay nakatipid tayo dahil hindi sila kumukuha ng sweldo dito, unlike dati na ang GM ay tayo nagpapasahod. Nagbigay talaga (administrator Edgardo Masongsong) ng importansya considering na may issues about technical, minabuti niya na magtalaga dito at least hindi biased, walang kakampihan, papaboran,” he said.

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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.