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Zamcelco, WMPC OK 2nd compromise deal

Electricity consumers in Zamboanga City can feel more secure with reliable supply as their electric cooperative made a second compromise deal with a major supplier, which had agreed to provide power for the next 90 days.

The investor-managers of Zamboanga City Electric Cooperative (Zamcelco), Crowninvestment Holdings Inc. and Desco Inc. said in a statement they had posted an additional P150 million to Western Mindanao Power Corp. (WMPC) following a hearing at the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) held yesterday.

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Zamcelco and WMPC are locked in dispute where the cooperative claims that the power producer overcharged them a total of P441 million from 2015 to 2018.

Zamcelco said the alleged overpayments covered the pending payables the cooperative incurred to the power supplier, who had reacted by stopping further delivery of electricity for what it—in turn—considered as unpaid bills.

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Earlier, in an initial compromise agreement, Zamcelco paid P370 million to WMPC.

Through the new compromise, Zamcelco will give WMPC a partial payment of P150 million plus an additional P80 million in security deposit. WMPC, in turn, will run its power plant for 90 days.

Zamcelco maintains these compromise deals are entered into without prejudice to other pending matters before the ERC.

“We are still waiting for the ERC’s decision on our motion for a claim for refund and for the dismissal of the application for Zamcelco-WMPC PSA’s approval,” Zamcelco chief management officer Henry Virola said, referring to a proposed power supply agreement between them.

In April, Crown-Zamcelco filed a motion with the ERC for a claim for refund of its overpayments. The motion also asked for its withdrawal from the PSA and the ERC’s dismissal of the application for approval of Zamcelco’s PSA with WMPC.

“WMPC charged Zamcelco for a fixed capacity of 50 megawatts, when it would not use over 25 MW a month,” he said.

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TAGS: electricity, Western Mindanao Power Corp. (WMPC), Zamboanga City Electric Cooperative (Zamcelco)
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