Albay consumers vote for SMC takeover of Aleco - report
MANILA, Philippines - Albay consumers have voted in favor of the private sector's takeover of debt-ridden Albay Electric Cooperative (Aleco), Manila Standard Today reported.
Department of Energy director Mylene Capongco confirmed the "unofficial" results of the referendum, which showed consumers are in favor of the private sector's takeover of Aleco, rather than an electric cooperative.
The National Electrification Administration conducted the referendum last Saturday.
Once the results of the referendum are made official, the interim board of Aleco is expected to issue a notice of award to San Miguel Corp.'s subsidiary SMC Global Power Holdings Corp.
Earlier, the interim board had already approved the bid offer of SMC.
Under the terms of reference, SMC will only manage Aleco but not own the electric cooperative.
"The terms that are already clear is that San Miguel will not own Aleco. They will just run it and shoulder the debt and pay monthly concession fees," Energy Secretary Jericho Petilla earlier said.
Petilla is also hoping Aleco's P4 billion debt will be addressed once the private sector comes in.
Last July, the entire province of Albay experienced a blackout, as the National Grid Corp. cut off its power supply to the Albay over unpaid debts.