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Bacolod City, Philippines Monday, July 18, 2016
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Lift Ceneco suspensions, NEA asked

A motion for reconsideration had been filed by seven incumbent and former directors of the Central Negros Electric Cooperative asking the National Electrification Administration to lift the suspension order it issued against them.

They also asked NEA to reconsider and set aside its May 18 decision, and to issue a new one dismissing the administrative complaint against them for utter lack of merit.

NEA ordered the suspension of Ceneco president Arnel Lapore and directors Paul Lizares, Joyce Martha Cuenca, Michael Maravilla, Vicente Tan, Robert Javellana and former directors Michael Maravilla and Zenaida Lacson for 90 days as its action on the administrative complaint filed by general manager Sulpicio Lagarde Jr. whom the directors had dismissed from service.

The NEA Board of Administrators meted the penalty of 90 days suspension on the respondents on the basis of its findings that the respondents are guilty of less grave offenses for “illegally terminating Lagarde as general manager of Ceneco.”

Their suspension took effect on June 21.

Lagarde filed an administrative complaint against the respondents before the NEA Administrative Committee on March 10, 2015, with prayer that “an order be issued removing the respondents from their posts in Ceneco, with an order disqualifying them from running in any Ceneco elections or any appointment to any position in the cooperative.”

In their motion for reconsideration dated July 5, the respondents said that after the ouster of Lagarde, Ceneco's operation ran smoothly. And under the leadership of acting Ceneco manager Chuchie Destriza, their systems loss went down from as much as 15.98 percent to 11,39 percent.

They said Ceneco registered a net income of P12 million, of over and under recoveries, in the 18 months operations without Lagarde. The decision of the Board to oust him was well compensated when Ceneco's category was elevated from Yellow C to Yellow B and that this continues to soar high.

This performance can be well verified in the records of NEA, the operational impact of which was actually felt by the rank and file personnel and officers of Ceneco when they separately filed their manifestations before NEA, they said.

Unfortunately however, until now, they have not heard any word form NEA of such manifestation of support from the rank and file, as well as the department managers of Ceneco, the respondents said.

They also noted that the NEA Board of Administrators never cited any particular act of the Ceneco Board that caused or tend to cause prejudice to the electric cooperative or its consumers.

The respondents said the systems loss had ballooned to P186 million under Lagarde. Any further losses would mean financial collapse of Ceneco. So the Board had to take drastic action if only to save Ceneco from its eventual death, and the only means was to cut the cancer cells that spread the virus.*CGS



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