Daneco-CDA consumers to face charges for violating RA 7832, rival lawyer says

Aug. 16, 2014

TAGUM CITY – Member-consumers of Davao del Norte Electric Cooperative under the Cooperative Development Authority faction (Daneco-CDA) would be charged criminally for “illegal reconnection” of their lines at the time the faction took over management of Daneco.

On Friday, Atty. Jeorge Rapista of the National Electrification Administration faction of Daneco warned that criminal charges would filed against them Republic Act 7832 or the Anti-Pilferage Act of 1994.

“From now on criminal cases would be filed against those who performed the illegal reconnection and those who allowed and authorized the commission of the same,” Rapista said in an interview.

Rapista said that “member-consumers will be arrested if caught in the act or in flagrante delicto”.  He added that continued payment to Daneco-CDA “because of threat of disconnection is not only illogical but also it is not a legally acceptable justification”.

Engr. Godofredo Guya, NEA project supervisor, in a local television interview, said “the move [of filing charges] is necessary to educate the people that Daneco-NEA is the only legitimate entity recognized by the law.”

Guya said the ongoing dispute between two Daneco groups is “discouraging potential power investors and in general, undermines the economic growth of the province.”

DAneco-NEA believed that its rival faction reconnected the lines that were cut previously by the former.

Member-consumers in this city were quick to criticize the warning.

“Injustice jud na para namo. Nganong kami man kasuhan? Kami ba diay hinungdan sa ilang gubot unya tarong man pud ang among pagbayad sa among obligasyon matag bulan? Dili siguro ingon ang solusyon kung gusto sa NEA na diha tanang  konsumante magbayad sa ilaha (That’s an injustice. Why would we be charged? Were we the cause of their quarrel and besides we have been paying religiously our bills monthly. That should not be the solution),” a 480-year-old consumer, who owns a grocery store and who requested anonymity said.

He said that if NEA would push through with the filing of charges, it will only lead “to more problems than solution,” suggesting that NEA should inform the member-consumers first about its legal move.

Salon owner, Trisha Arqueza, 36, said the plan is a form of harassment. “We [member-consumers] have nothing to do with  their dispute.

Member-consumers from both groups, regardless of affiliations, are on the same situation. Others have reconnected and disconnected from the power source,” Arqueza said.

Rapista said: that “it is a matter of choice and  ignorance of the law excuses no one. Let them use that as their defense in the proper forum and let us see if they are legally correct. All these are not good defenses and these will not stand in court.”

Meanwhile, Jerald Osorio, OIC-general manager of Daneco-CDA, said that “Daneco-NEA has no legal personality to operate and only Daneco-CDA by virtue of CDA certificate of registration no 9520-1102-1778.”

“Besides, the Court of Appeals Mindanao decision was opposed by Daneco-CDA  via  motion for certiorari filed with the Supreme Court last Aug 5.  and RTC -Tagum Judge Virginia Tejano-Ang wrote the NEA Administration to allow the two groups to operate transparently and honestly until the cases in courts are resolved with finality,” Osorio

“Last July 31, 2014, the Court of Appeals in Cagayan dismissed the motion filed by Daneco CDA to quash the injunction issued against them. This injunction prohibits them from operating,” Rapista said. (davaotoday.com)


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