Judging my newsfeed whenever prevalent fluctuations or unscheduled power interruptions occur in Bacolod City, I could safely say that many people are very unhappy with CENECO’s service. CENECO is the distribution utility that supplies power to Bacolod City and Central Negros. With outdated equipment, CENECO can no longer give value service to its consumers. Would you believe that the reason given to us why the opening of Landers Superstore Bacolod was delayed was power supply? We need change and improvement in our CENECO’s distribution facilities. The clear and present solution is the JVA or joint venture agreement. CENECO won’t be gone. It will just get help. So, please, Say YES TO JVA.
Say YES to JVA Between CENECO and Primelectric
for Better Service and Lower Rates
Common Complaints with CENECO
Here are some of the common complaints against CENECO that I see online. Some are relatable scenarios about our frustrations and disappointments over CENECO’s service.
- Frequent unscheduled brownouts throughout the week.
- Low voltage
- Transformers exploding or igniting and even causing fires
- Electrical posts that can no longer stand by themselves and are just supported by makeshift wood planks
- Sudden power interruptions that take a day or 2 for the power to be restored
- Electric meters that are so old that moss have grown inside, making you question its integrity in reading our electrical consumption
- Sudden spikes in monthly electrical bills without changes in the usual household usage. You try to reduce electricity consumption but the readings keep going up!
- Not getting good service but getting immediately disconnected if you fail to pay on time because of the one-bill policy
- Nobody picking up the hotline or official phones removed off the hook during power interruptions so that they can’t receive complaints or reports
- Applications for connections that take too long to process, either because there are no electric meters or transformers available
Have you been a victim, too? Are you also unhappy with CENECO?
Reasons Why CENECO Can No Longer Give Us Better Service and Lower Rates
No matter how we rant online or even go to their office, CENECO can no longer give us good-value service. Why? Here are the reasons.
About 12 years ago, CENECO has started pleading their cause before the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC). The company claimed in the proposal that they needed a P1.3 billion peso loan in order to fund their capital expenditures (CAPEX). This amount is the cash flow they needed to upgrade as well as rehabilitate their distribution facilities.
Unfortunately, their proposal was shot down by the ERC. Why?
Possible Reasons Why the ERC Rejected CENECO’s Proposal
While you might say that it is already moot and academic because it is in the past now, but we need to understand why we are not getting what we are paying for at CENECO.
- There are groups opposing the loan.
- The CapEx application is not considered an emergency.
- CENECO continues to charge the consumers with a 15-centavo continuing charge that amounts to PhP90 million annually. Despite us paying for CapEx, CENECO is not using that properly.
- If they get more than a billion pesos in loan, the amount will be charged to the consumers and this will burden us some more.
But because CENECO no longer has enough funds (even using up restricted funds for bill deposit refunds) to operate the facility properly because of obvious mismanagement, its facilities are no longer in their prime working state. There are no new equipment and substations are not upgraded despite the demand.
These are the reasons why we experience frequent brownouts, expensive rates, and very poor service. No bank will approve CENECO’s loan without the ERC’s approval, hence no improvements. If this continues, our situation will just worsen. How can we attract more businesses here if our electricity is unreliable?
When the JVA Pushes Through
CENECO’s distribution assets, including manpower, are valued at P1.7 billion, which Primelectric will pay for. This will be used to pay for loans as well as employee benefits. Then Primelectric will bring in additional capital of P2 billion to upgrade and rehabilitate facilities. It’s a win-win situation for us.
Say YES to JVA, Yes to Change
If you are unhappy with CENECO’s service, let’s unite for a common cause. Let us not be resistant to change if it can only bring so many benefits to us consumers. We get lesser brownouts, better service, and more importantly, cheaper electricity.
- When is the Plebiscite: August 19, 20, 26, and 27 and September 2-3, 2023.
- Where: Schools identified by CENECO
VOTE by Proxy
Are you too busy to vote or are physically unable to be there, you can vote by proxy.
Fill up your proxy form, now available at the CENECO JVA booths located at:
- SM City Mall
- Ayala Mall
- Robinsons Mall
- City Mall
- Gaisano Mall
- 888 Mall
- Old and new Bacolod City halls