Western Visayas

As power returns to Western Visayas, NGCP claps back at critics

John Sitchon

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As power returns to Western Visayas, NGCP claps back at critics

BLACKOUT. Residents and workers do their tasks under candlelight after a massive blackout hits Iloilo City on January 2.

Arnold Almacen/Iloilo City Mayor's Office

'Rather than using NGCP as a scapegoat, we urge policymakers to be objective in their search for facts and not coddle certain sectors,' says the power agency in a statement

CEBU, Philippines – After parts of Western Visayas finally recovered from a four-day power outage, the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) refuted claims by critics that the agency failed to ensure steady power to the region.

The NGCP said in a statement sent to Rappler on Friday, January 5, that its mandate was only the management of transmission of power from producers to consumers, and that it could not intervene in matters concerning power generation

“As the transmission service provider, NGCP can only give an overview of the current supply and demand situation and endeavor to dispatch any and all available power,” the agency added.

Before this, local government units (LGUs) and state legislators called for an investigation into the cause of the regionwide blackout.  

Officials like Iloilo City Mayor Jerry Treñas vented their anger at the NGCP for what they said was its inaction on repeated blackouts which have happened previously in April 2023.

President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said in a video posted on his official Facebook page on Friday that the NGCP failed to resort to manual load dropping, resulting in the crisis that burdened residents of Western Visayas.

The president directed the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) to reset the NGCP’s rates without further delay.

In its statement, the NGCP cleared out rumors about its alleged inaction and abnormalities with the power grid’s system stability. 

According to its data, there was no transmission disturbance before the tripping of the Panay Energy Development Corporation (PEDC) Unit 1 (83MW) at 12:06 pm on Tuesday afternoon, January 2. 

The NGCP insisted that it immediately fixed the transmission system and normalized voltage before several power plants “inexplicably tripped” at 2:19 pm on Tuesday.

“Rather than using NGCP as a scapegoat, we urge policymakers to be objective in their search for facts and not coddle certain sectors,” the power agency said.

The NGCP stood firm on its position that it had undertaken actions within protocols, contrary to speculative statements coming from some officials and critics.

“We again reiterate our push for a comprehensive industry-wide approach to resolve the persistent power supply issues on Panay Island and elsewhere in the country,” the NGCP said.

As of this writing, the NGCP has fully restored power to the Panay Island sub-grid on Friday morning.

– Rappler.com

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