Tagum mayor wants speedy SC ruling on Daneco row

Jun. 12, 2014

TAGUM CITY— Mayor Allan Rellon wanted the Supreme Court to speedily hand down a decision about  the intra management dispute of Davao del Norte Electric Cooperative (Daneco) to avert power outages.

“(I)f only the High Court will decide right away as to who is the legitimate manager of Daneco, then we might be able to increase our collection targets to pay our debts,” Rellon said Wednesday in a text message.

Rellon also stressed the importance of having only one entity, legally recognized by the High Court, to collect payments of electric bills from member-consumers.

“It would be better this way to avoid confusion. Then we might be able to negotiate the Department of Energy and PSALM to defer the disconnection of power in Davao del Norte,” Rellon said.

The threat of power outages surfaced after PSALM (Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management) warned last week that Daneco’s franchise areas in Davao del Norte and Compostela Valley would be disconnected from the power grid because it failed to pay its debts of more than P500 million.

PSALM president Emmanuel R. Ledesma Jr. said that it sought the approval of DOE   to disconnect Daneco from the grid.

PSALM also accused Daneco-CDA faction, saying that “its payment is not up-to-date as the last was made in December 2013.”

A close personal aide of Rellon who is privy to the issue said: “(A)ctually, the mayor didn’t approve the business permit of Daneco-CDA here in Tagum. They filed mandamus against the mayor but this was later dismissed by the Court.”

Rellon’s aide, who requested anonymity for lack of authority, told DavaoToday that “the mayor leaves the issue to the two governors (of Davao del Norte and Compostela Valley) pending the issuance of decision from the High Court.”

The DANECO-CDA faction has not issued a statement regarding PSALM’s allegation despite series of attempts to get their side.

Meanwhile, Sofonias Gabonada, Executive Assistant of Davao del Norte Governor Rodolfo del Rosario, said the “issue has been brought to the proper forum for resolution by the two parties involved.”

Gabonada added that “this present issue of disconnection of power supply is the effect primarily of the management issue of Daneco. Thus, the provincial government is urging an immediate resolution of the case.” (Mart D. Sambalud/davaotoday.com)

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