Panay Electric to continue operations even after franchise expires on Jan. 18

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 18 2019 05:11 PM | Updated as of Jan 18 2019 05:32 PM

MANILA - Iloilo-based Panay Electric Co. (PECO) on Friday said it would continue to operate even after its 25-year legislative franchise expires midnight of Jan. 18.

As the only distributor with facilities in the area, it will continue to distribute electricity to service the consumers, PECO administrative manager Marcelo Cacho told ANC.

Cacho said both the Department of Energy (DOE) and the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) have asked the firm to continue its operations.

Panay Electric has been waiting for the schedule of its franchise renewal hearing since last year but no schedule was given despite "constant followups," he said.

Cacho said a "misleading" signature campaign citing "massive consumer issues" must have caused the delay.

"It hasn’t move and there’s still no explanation as to why," Cacho said.

Meanwhile, the franchise application of its new competitor MORE Electric Power Corp, controlled by billionaire port magnate Enrique Razon, was already transmitted to the office of the President for signing, Cacho said.

Panay Electric earlier said it may go to court if its franchise is not renewed. It also plans to "challenge" any decision that would grant a franchise to MORE, Cacho said.

ABS-CBN's sister company, First Philippine Holdings, is a minority stakeholder in PECO.

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