A year after Pablo: Power supply lack slows down recovery

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Wednesday, February 26, 2014

DAVAO Oriental Governor Corazon Malanyaon said the three Typhoon Pablo-hit municipalities need "adequate power supply" to invite investors and bring back economic activity in their areas.

"After all, adequate power supply is one of the major requirements of investors that would ensure economic recovery in these areas," said Provincial Governor Corazon Malanyaon in her situation report delivered during the visit of President Benigno Aquino III in Cateel, Davao Oriental on Monday.

She said a total of 24 out of 42 barangays in the municipalities of Baganga, Cateel and Boston in Davao Oriental have no supply of power yet since the occurrence of Typhoon Pablo on December 4, 2012.


"Communication and power were restored only in town centers and in barangays along the highways," Malanyaon said.

Citing the power situationer provided by the Davao Oriental Electric Cooperative (Doreco), she said power in six out of 18 barangays in Baganga, 12 out of 16 in Cateel, and six out of eight in Boston are yet to be restored.

The three municipalities are the hard hit towns during the occurrence of Typhoon Pablo.

"It is our hope that the fund request by Doreco from NEA (National Electrification Administration) and the DOE (Department of Energy) would be granted to complete the restoration of energy in all the barangays of the three municipalities and the conversion of the single phase line into three-phase line in selected areas," Malanyaon said.

Aquino, on the other hand, chided his officials for failing to restore power in some areas of the province since Pablo hit the country in December 2012.

In his speech, he said he already communicated with Budget Secretary Florencio Abad, Energy Secretary Jericho Petilla and National Electrification Administration (NEA) Administrator Edita Bueno on the failure to re-energize some villages in the province.

"Tinawagan ko, dahil ako'y nagulat, na bakit mayroong pa palang lugar dito na hindi naibabalik ang kuryente. Tapos ang sagot sa akin, ay mayroong daw ho pending request ang NEA. Sagot ng DBM, "Wala ho sa amin `yang request." Tinatanong ko ngayon ang DOE, "Nasaan ba talaga ang request na `yan?" Buti pa, sa tagal ng beses tinanong ko sa inyo `to, bago ako umalis ng Cateel, kailangan kong masagot ng matino at maayos. At talaga naman ho, alam ho nila na tayo'y bihira ako mawalan ng pasensya, ‘wag sana nilang subukan," he said.

Cateel is among the calamity-stricken towns that Aquino visited in observance of the Edsa Revolution anniversary.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on February 26, 2014.

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