Monday, October 12, 2015

Entrepreneurial Farmer by Ambrosio R. Villorente

The Fate of Akelco

The Board of Directors (BoD) and Management of Akelco will hold a referendum on the fate of Akelco scheduled on December 12, 2015. Akelco member/consumers will select one from among the three (3) options which are: 1. Akelco to remain as non-stock, non-profit electric cooperative under the National Electric Administration (NEA); 2. To convert Akelco into stock cooperative under the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA); and 3. To convert Akelco into stock corporation under the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Akelco has published and distributed a 20-page pamphlet, size 8.5 inches by 5.5 inches, entitled “Conversion Issues”.

The pamphlet defined the terms Conversion and Referendum. It identified conversion issues. It also cited the legal basis of the conduct of the referendum. The pamphlet also identified the “Key Areas of change which are: 1. Functions of Authorities; 2. Governing law and authority; 3. Ownership and membership and requirements; 4. Type and purpose of existence; 5. Quorum requirement; 6. Management and 7. Tax treatment in either of the three (3) government regulatory offices as NEA, CDA, and SEC.

The pamphlet also presented the supervisory powers of NEA, CDA and SEC over its respective business firms as to institutional and technical aspects. Moreover, the pamphlet presented the duties and responsibilities of member-consumers under NEA, member-cooperators under CDA, and as stockholders under the SEC.

The “Historical Profile” occupied five (5) pages or 25 percent of the space in the pamphlet.

Akelco was incorporated by virtue of Republic Act 6038. It was registered on April 25, 1972. The profile pointed the process Akelco underwent for the last 43 years since 1972. It ended with “Akelco remaining to be a performing cooperative adhering to all compliances and doing its best to serve the province of Aklan including the two towns of Antique. With the entry of Open Access, Akelco, with the support of its member consumers will continue to survive in the deregulated environment and soar high in its mandate for total rural electrification.”

To the Akelco-Consumer members, please secure a copy of the said pamphlet, read it, study it, analyze it, and compare it with the actuality occurring at Akelco and to you, to us. The pamphlet has anonymous author. Yet it presented the good side of Akelco under NEA.

During the Press Conference held on September 28, the board of Directors of Akelco made known their consensus that they prefer to remain as non-stock, non-profit cooperative under the NEA. They are contented, they are happy, they enjoy under NEA. To them at Akelco, it is DMHM or “Dito’y Mabuti Hanggang Mayroon”.

To my fellow consumer members, are you DMHM in Akelco? After 43 years of power distribution in Aklan, what can you say of Akelco’s services? Akelco’s power rate? Does Akelco promote conducive environment?

Today, Akelco has one of the highest power rates its consumer members pay. It has comparatively frequent power interruptions and promotes ugliness in the environment. It has impeded roads improvement as its electric posts block parts of the roads.

We’ll continue our analysis of the forthcoming Akelco Referendum in the next issue concerning areas of change.

To Use Kalibo Bridge

Except for the two approaches, Kalibo bridge is finished. It also needs painting. However, unless the two approaches are constructed, it can never be used for the purpose it was constructed.

The DPWH has not cleared the obstructions such as electric/telephone/cable TV posts are not removed. DPWH has not negotiated with the property owners as to how much the properties government will pay them of their real properties and improvement.

Can the DPWH pay them so that as early as possible, the bridge will be useful? If not, millions of pesos of government investment is wasted.

Is it a habit of the DPWH officials constructing infrastructure projects without asking all the questions in the feasibility study and answered in the affirmative?

In Bohol, DPWH constructed a bridge costing hundreds of million pesos. But since its completion, it has never been used . The approach of the bridge is blocked by a big Roman Catholic church. Why did the DPWH construct the said bridge without the permission of the Roman Catholic officials to demolish the said church?/MP

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