Celso invites DOE to tackle Zambo City power problem PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 01 May 2012 14:34

Mayor Celso Lobregat has formally requested officials from the Department of Energy (DOE) in Manila to come to Zamboanga City together with their counterparts from other other related agencies to personally tackle the power issue and its possible solutions.

In view of this, Mayor Lobregat said DOE Chief of Staff and Undersecretary Atty. Ina Magpale-Asirit has promised to come to the city sometime this month of May to meet with the power stakeholders and other sectors concerned to discuss about the power issue.

While the national government has conducted the Mindanao Power Summit in Davao City last April 13,  Zamboanga City has a particular situation that is different from all the other areas in Mindanao.

“We have a particular situation in Zamboanga City, so we would want the DOE to come to Zamboanga to meet with all sectors concerned”, the chief executive said after talking with Usec. Asirit through telephone recently.

The meeting is set in addition to the mayor’s urgent request Energy Secretary Jose Rene Almendras to increase load allocation and dispatch of power to
Zamboanga City through ZAMCELCO citing provisions of Republic Act 7639 in the wake of the worsening power situation in Mindanao.

In a formal letter addressed to Sec. Almendras dated April 15, Mayor Lobregat said Zamboanga City is at the end of the power loop and is experiencing 5-hour brownouts a day, making it one of the hardest hit areas in Mindanao.

This situation, he stressed, is despite the fact that Zamboanga City is the host of a 100MW power generating plant operated by the Western Mindanao Power Corporation (WMPC), which is located in barangay Sangali.

Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of Section 5(i) of RA 7638, specifically Section 6(b) on Prioritization of Load Dispatch makes possible his request for increased/ additional load allocation for the host area, according to Lobregat. The  law states that “in times of energy shortage, the energy-generating capacity (whichever is lower) which shall be delivered to the appropriate electric utility for distribution to the official resettlement/relocation sites of the community and people affected, and thereafter, to the relevant host LGU or host region...”.

“We are respectfully and urgently requesting the Department of Energy to immediately act, prioritize and increase the load allocation/ dispatch of the contracted or available capacity to be delivered to the electric utility/ cooperative in Zamboanga City (ZAMCELCO), in line with the objectives of RA 7638 of devising ways and means of giving direct benefits to the LGU, especially the community which hosts the energy generating facility”, the mayor appealed in his letter to Sec. Almendras dated April 13.

During the Mindanao Power Summit in Davao, Mayor Lobregat officially submitted a manifesto of Zamboanga power stakeholders containing the issues, concerns and proposed solutions to the Zamboanga power situation.

“Given the growing demand and limited supply of power in the entire Mindanao, we support the establishment of baseload power plants in Zamboanga City consistent with environmental laws and policies, and seriously urge the National Government to create a conducive environment for the private sector to invest in the power sector and expedite the processing serious proposals and, to explore all alternative sources of energy”, the manifesto, signed by representatives from various sectors in the city. — Sheila Covarrubias