NEA vows to intensify electrification of rural communities, empowerment of electric coops

The National Electrification Administration (NEA) has crafted plans anew to intensify the Rural Electrification (RE) Program and capacitate its partner electric cooperatives (ECs) following NEA Administrator Edgardo Masongsong’s vow for a more strengthened partnership between the Agency and the ECs.

In the NEA 2017 Strategic Thinking Conference-Workshop held on December 26-28, 2016 at the NEA Building, Diliman, Quezon City, Administrator Masongsong batted for multi-pronged initiatives that will not only accelerate the energization of unlit areas in the country, but will also make the services of the Agency more responsive to the needs of the ECs and the electricity consumers.

“Under my leadership, I want the NEA to be more consumer-focused. We will work together with the electric cooperatives in rolling out programs that fully tap the potential of rural electrification to enhance people’s productivity and make them active partners in building sustainable rural communities,” Administrator Masongsong said.

The Administrator added, “Definitely, we will have to fast-track the implementation of the Sitio Electrification Program and the Barangay Line Enhancement Program to be able to introduce empowerment programs for our member-owner-consumers. Without electricity in the remote areas, it will be difficult for us to push programs that can complement the productivity skills of our rural folks.”

Electrification programs

The Sitio Electrification Program (SEP) and the Barangay Line Enhancement Program (BLEP) are interrelated electrification projects of the NEA started in 2010.

For 2017, the Agency has committed 2,140 sitios for energization with a total evaluated project cost of Php1.8 billion. This covers 825 programmed sitios in Luzon, 878 in Visayas, and 707 in Mindanao.

Meanwhile, NEA is also targeting to complete a total of 104 BLEP projects nationwide, of which seven are submarine cable installations and six are tapping point upgrading. 48 of the total BLEP projects are programmed for Mindanao, while 42 and 14 are expected to be accomplished in Visayas and Luzon, respectively.

Funding for these projects is sourced from 2013, 2014, and 2015 BLEP subsidies and the 2013 PAMANA development fund.

New vision statement

During the Strategic Thinking Conference-Workshop, the assembly has likewise moved to formulate a new vision statement that will significantly align the direction of the Agency to the salient provisions of EPIRA.

The new vision statement of the NEA reads: “A dynamic and responsive NEA that is a vanguard of sustainable rural development in partnership with globally-competitive Electric Cooperatives and empowered Electricity Consumers.”

Administrator Masongsong said “the vision will serve as NEA’s pledge to perform better in exercising its mandate of totally electrifying the countryside and in putting to fore the interest of the member-owner-consumers, which remains a primary concern for President Rodrigo R. Duterte and Secretary Alfonso G. Cusi. Their espousal of a pro-people government is a clear proof that change, indeed, has come.”

The Administrator added, “I hope that during my tenure as your NEA Administrator, and with the help of the general constituency of the institution, the aggregate of the employees and officers of the ECs, the support of industry stakeholders, and the involvement of electric consumers, members and leaders alike, all over the country, the NEA will be able to achieve meaningful and emphatic changes for rural progress and development that are inclusive and sustained in the generations to come.”###