Central Negros Electric Cooperative acting general manager Danny Pondevilla promised to reduce the residential power rate by P1 per kilowatt hour, through lower generation charge, within six months.
The commitment was made by Pondevilla, who is concurrently the general manager of Northern Negros Electric Cooperative, during a press conference in Bacolod City yesterday.
He said that after several days of being in office, he was challenged to know why Ceneco, unlike other electric cooperatives, has a higher power rate when its residential and industrial users are just in one urban center.
Pondevilla pointed out that the generation charge is the main factor of the higher rate of Ceneco because of the over-contracted power purchased from different providers.
This causes the cooperative to pay an amount of power in excess of what the cooperative had consumed, he said.
Generation charge comprises 60 percent of the total monthly bill of consumers and is instrumental for the increase in every household’s budget, he further said.
To address this, Pondevilla said he will implement a competitive bidding procedure for the power providers, and the cooperative will only purchase the average power consumption based on the minimum and maximum load and will not enter into contract over the maximum capacity.
He noted that Ceneco now has an 80-megawatt minimum load capacity, which goes up to a maximum of 140MW during peak hours.
Aside from being acting general manager, Pondevilla was also appointed by the National Electrification Administration as the project supervisor, which gives him the power over decisions made by the Board of Directors.
Pondevilla also said that as a compliance required by the NEA for a Class “A” electric cooperatives like Ceneco, the systems loss contributes to the additional charges in the monthly bill.
Although it is very minimal compare to the generation charge, he said.
Ceneco has more than 11 percent systems loss, which is higher than the NEA’s allowable eight percent.
Pondevilla said that he will revive the Consumers Advisory Council composed of Ceneco department heads and consumer groups as well as the church and the media to promote transparency in all transactions of the cooperative.
This is to erase alleged corruption-tainted transactions, he said.
Moreover, Pondevilla said that preventive maintenance period will also have a new schedule as he suggested to the Engineering Department the possibility of scheduling work from 4 a.m. to 8 a.m. so that major activities will not be affected compared to the usual whole-day brownout in affected areas.
He also called on the consumers to be vigilant against illegal connections as Ceneco is bent on penalizing those responsible for these, based on the cooperative’s policy. – MML