By MART D. SAMBALUD
TAGUM CITY—Because it was not registered as a corporation, collection of payments made by the Davao del Norte Electric Cooperative (Daneco), under the wing of National Electrification Administration (NEA), is “illegal.”
Thus, claimed the Daneco-Cooperative Development Authority (CDA) faction which is poised to file charges of “syndicated estafa” against its rival group.
But Daneco-NEA legal counsel George Rapista told Davao Today that the accusation has “no legal and factual basis.”
“We are not registered at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) because we are registered with the NEA. The same applies to all electric cooperatives nationwide under the supervision of NEA,” Rapista said.
Daneco-CDA used a document from the SEC to prove that the NEA faction had no business collecting payments from member-consumers.
Gerardo del Rosario, Assistant Director of SEC Corporate Filing and Records Division said in a two-page SEC certification last May 2 that “(R)ecords of the Commission do not show the registration of the Davao del Norte Electric Cooperative Inc. as a corporation or as a partnership.”
As such, Daneco-CDA claimed that the “absence of juridical personality” on the part of the NEA faction has rendered their operations of collecting payments from the member-consumers “illegal.”
“For that, we’re sure we will file a syndicated estafa case against them for their illegal collection as they have no legal basis to exist. They have no right in the first place. Many Daneco members will file for it,” Daneco-CDA Board Chairman Albert Omega reportedly said.
Dioscoro Granada, Daneco-CDA Board Member said that “NEA must heed the law and stop insisting their baseless authority which is only prolonging the agony of member-consumers. The SEC certification is clear that they don’t have any juridical personality and no authority to collect payments.”
Daneco-NEA’s Rapista scoffed at the accusation and said “the filing of the estafa case would be an exercise in futility and a waste of resources of Daneco not to mention the efforts and time. They (Daneco-CDA) will be using again the money of the member-consumers in filing a baseless and unfounded case of estafa.”
Rapista urged the rival Daneco-CDA group to use the money to pay the power suppliers, instead of spending it to legal fees.
He alleged that “based on Daneco-CDA’s audited report submitted to DOE, the group spent more than 8 million pesos for legal expenses alone.”
“In fact, modesty aside, they lost in all these cases. All efforts and energies should be focused and directed on how to solve the problem on power outages, the payment to power suppliers and how to improve the services of the cooperative,” Rapista added. (Mart D. Sambalud/davaotoday.com)