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HomeLocal News'The consumers have spoken:' People finally get justice, some pro-JVA advocates say...

‘The consumers have spoken:’ People finally get justice, some pro-JVA advocates say as ‘yes’ votes win in plebiscite

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BACOLOD CITY, Negros Occidental, Philippines – Proponents and backers of the historic joint venture agreement between power distribution utility Central Negros Electric Cooperative and private firm Primelectric Holdings Corporation will finally proceed to the next stage of the process for a private utility to handle power distribution here, two other cities, and two towns.

“The consumers have spoken,” labor advocate Wennie Sancho told DNX after figures released by the CENECO Overall Plebiscite Committee showed the “yes” votes getting more than the required 51 percent for the ratification at only Day 5 of the required vote.

Sancho, one of the advocates for the passage of the joint deal with the Enrique Razon-owned MORE Power, said consumers have won justice for themselves to be serviced better by a power distributor that is more capable than the decades-old CENECO thst had been the power utility for more than half a million people in this city and two others, Talisay and Silay, and the towns of Murcia and Don Salvador Benedicto.

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The Committee released figures showing the “yes” getting a total of 92,807 votes on Day 5 of the polls, breaching the requires 88,870 needed votes or 51 percent of the 177,737, eligible voters.

Two more poll days, 6 and 7 September 2023 are left but the yes votes won it in only just five.

Sancho, who was harshly criticized for backing the JVA and calling CENECO workers as “spoiled and entitled,” voiced hopes that the private firm, MORE Power that will infuse billions of pesos into CENECO’s operations can provide checks and balances against internal “graft and corruption” that has led to poor services for consumers.

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MORE publicist Jonathan Cabrera declined to give a comment when sought by DNX today, Sunday, 27 August 2023.

CENECO acting general manager, lawyer Arnel Lapore, meanwhile, had not been answering calls and texts from DNX when sought for comment.

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Julius D. Mariveles
Julius D. Mariveles
An amateur cook who has a mean version of humba, the author has recently tried to make mole negra, the Mexican sauce he learned by watching shows of master chef Rick Bayless. A journalist since 19, he has worked in the newsrooms of radio, local papers, and Manila-based news organizations. A stroke survivor, he now serves as executive editor of DNX.
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