The Imminent Revolution of the Power Landscape in Negros About to Happen


Electrifying Change: The Imminent Revolution of the Power Landscape in Negros About to Happen

The power landscape in Negros is on the brink of a revolutionary transformation, heralding a significant change in electricity services. This metamorphosis is propelled by the progressive steps taken by Central Negros Electric Cooperative, Inc. (CENECO) in collaboration with the National Electrification Administration (NEA) and Negros Power. In this article, we delve into the pivotal moments leading to this transformative juncture and the conditions shaping CENECO’s evolution.

A Catalyst for Change: The seeds of change were sown when CENECO initiated a groundbreaking proposal for a Joint Venture Agreement (JVA) with Primelectric Holdings, Inc./Negros Electric and Power Corp. (Primelectric/NEPC). The NEA, in response to CENECO’s inquiry, emphasized the need for compliance with Section 36(b) of Presidential Decree No. 269 (PD 269), underlining the necessity for member consensus and NEA’s consent in any cooperative asset sale.

The Joint Venture Unveiled:

Undeterred by the complexities, CENECO forged ahead, finalizing the Joint Venture Agreement on June 3, 2023. The agreement outlined the transfer of distribution assets to NEPC and the obligation to obtain member and NEA consent. Notably, the NEA’s endorsement played a crucial role in validating this ambitious venture.

Plebiscite: A Democratic Mandate:

CENECO, with the active participation of Local Government Units, conducted a Plebiscite from June 24 to August 27, 2023, involving member-consumers in the decision-making process. 55.31% of eligible voters supported the JVA, surpassing the required majority and aligning with PD 269’s provisions.

NEA’s Conditional Consent:

In a memorandum dated 12 September 2023, the NEA acknowledged and confirmed the Plebiscite Results. The NEA, respecting the members’ democratic will, conditionally granted its consent to the JVA, subject to stringent conditions to ensure the economic viability and efficiency of CENECO.

Conditions for Consent:

The NEA’s conditional consent entails a comprehensive set of conditions. Noteworthy among them are the settlement of outstanding loans, separation pay for employees, adequate funds for consumer deposits, and ensuring assets funded by grants are excluded from the sale. Primelectric/NEPC must also secure a legislative franchise and commit to full electrification.

Path Forward: With conditional consent granted, CENECO is poised at a critical juncture. The transition to Primelectric/NEPC’s operations demands meticulous adherence to the outlined conditions, ensuring a seamless shift without compromising service quality. The NEA’s vigilance in upholding consumer interests and the cooperative’s economic health will be paramount in this journey.

As CENECO navigates the path toward modernization, the collaborative efforts of NEA, Negros Power, and the cooperative itself are steering Negros into an era of enhanced and sustainable electricity services. The conditions set forth by the NEA reflect a commitment to responsible transition, safeguarding the interests of both consumers and the cooperative. The upcoming chapters will unfold the intricate details of this transition, underscoring the importance of adaptability and foresight in the ever-evolving energy landscape.

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