By the end of this month, the First Catanduanes Electric Cooperative, Inc. (FICELCO) will have restored electricity to around 49,000 household around the province since the rehabilitation of the island grid began after super typhoon Rolly.
In its March 21, 2021 report, General Manager Raul V. Zafe said the emergency restoration plan sees at least 93.13% of the target households of 52,659 connected to the grid by March 31. Nearly 3,000 more households are considered totally damaged and cannot be re-energized.
By town, the number of households already energized (with percentage of restored houses in parentheses) is as follows: Bagamanoc, 2,011 in 15 barangays (89.14%); Baras, 1,683 in 21 barangays (57.30%); Bato, 4,530 27 barangays (98.65%); Caramoran, 5,349 in 27 barangays (100%); Gigmoto, 315 in 3 barangays (28.77%); Pandan, 3,733 in 26 barangays (100%); Panganiban, 1,771 in 19 barangays (84.73%); San Andres, 5,671 in 32 barangays (78.36%); San Miguel, 1,977 in 15 barangays (72.74%); Viga, 4,106 in 30 barangays (99.18%); and, Virac, 16,170 in 62 barangays (99.36%).
The FICELCO management said that last week’s target of 90.23% was not reached as other teams assigned in energization of households were temporarily reassigned to the restoration of primary and secondary lines and to attend to normal service requests from member-consumer-owners while waiting for the availability of materials to be used in household energization.
Lack of materials for use in the restoration of the backbone line along Baras-Gigmoto area also forced the cooperative to reassign one team to attend to MCO service requests.
On the other hand, the estimated cost of damage to the distribution lines of FICELCO by the storm has reached a total of P217,535,770.84.
In a recent meeting with the local media, GM Zafe had disclosed that the cooperative is applying for a P100 million loan with the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP), with the proceeds to be used in settling obligations with suppliers of materials and supplies used in the rehabilitation of power lines and house connections.
Earlier, the National Electrification Administration (NEA) released P25 million in financial assistance to the cooperative.
In the meantime, FICELCO is using part of its cash collections from power bills to settle some of its arrears with suppliers.