What ails Nordeco?Posted on
Fifty years, could have been a magnificent golden celebration for every member and user of the Northern Davao Electric Cooperative or Nordeco, the then Davao del Norte Electric Cooperative.
If consumer complaints are to be considered, seven out of ten consumers complain about the inadequate service that the electric cooperative owes them, while some argue that power outages are unavoidable and that Nordeco is doing its best.
It is common knowledge that Daneco, now Nordeco, was founded with politicians and powers-that-be behind it; it became a vehicle for political victory as members/consumers supported each cooperator, all because of trust and, of course, promises; however, as time passed, trust was lost and promises were broken; power service delivery became a dismal failure, with voices becoming increasingly louder each day.
Island Garden City of Samal Mayor Al David Uy describes the power distribution utility cooperative as “The game of the oligarchs”.
It got to the point where the group was split into two, Daneco-CDA (Cooperative Development Authority) and DANECO-NEA (National Electric Administration). The feuding groups served the same customers, but the collections went to different coffers, resulting in service interruptions with no one taking responsibility. Despite massive loans and new administration, the fact remains that Samal Island is still in the dark.
While Nordeco general manager Mario Angelo Sotto promises to improve the company’s performance over the next two to three years, Davao del Norte Governor Edwin Jubahib remains steadfast in his refusal to allow private power players to participate in the province’s economic development.
The line has been drawn, legal proceedings and counter-charges are on the horizon, but no one accepts responsibility when the obvious reality emerges: electricity supply is in short supply.
The true essence of cooperativism is member empowerment, with the assembly as the most important mandate, but in the Nordeco case, it’s clear that fall guys are being thrown in the dark to hide the real shark, who has been gobbling up money from members/consumers at the expense of poor service for years.
The situation is deteriorating by the day, as one assertion contradicts the other, but the truth is that service is lacking and choice is limited since a true referendum, as required by law, must be held to ascertain the true voice, given that Nordeco was granted a Congressional Franchise.
Consumers are perplexed as to why they continue to be left in the dark, whining about poor service while paying more due to the high rate of their power.
No one wants to approach the round table for a conversation right now, not to kiss and make up, but to discuss issues that impact everyone and to respond to the loud clamor for improved power service.
The general assembly’s voice could have been the best answer to the problem, but the health protocol, given the pandemic, is a hurdle, and many begin to wonder what happened to the loan. Why are they paying so much for such a poor service? What exactly is the problem with Nordeco?
Can someone explain why the Ombudsman in Mindanao brought it to their attention in 2014? Why do politicians have a seat on the board of directors? When is it forbidden?
When it comes to loans, why deny every member/consumer the information they deserve? Why should they be kept in the dark about the underlying issue?
What’s the true problem with Nordeco?
They have every right to know as cooperators, and that information is the most compelling question that is gradually pushing each member to doubt their own Nordeco.