Friday, August 25, 2017

Ayaw Tumabi ng Poste

There's a joke about a drunk who hit an electric post. As expected the drunk never admitted to anything wrong. He didn't fall short of honking and honking, the post just didn't step aside (Ayaw tumabi ng poste).

image from Philippine Star

On Philippine roads, post road-widening project, the electric post is in the middle of the brand new road, obviously not stepping aside.

This July I took a short video of a newly widened L. Sumulong Memorial Circle in Antipolo City. You'd know how thin the old road was with the electric posts still outlining it.

And I recently googled, published also this July in the Philippine Star, those electric posts may learn to step aside in future road projects - no honking required. 

In 2013, Republic Act No. 10531 was passed into law. Under RA10531 (also called the National Electrification Administration Reform Act of 2013), Electric Cooperatives must be properly compensated in the event their utilities are removed and/or relocated because of government infrastructure projects. 


The Joint Circular was required to be issued within 180 days from the effectivity of the IRR. However, no Joint Circular was issued by the DOE and DPWH from 2013 to 2017. The absence of this Joint Circular could not be underestimated. It caused the proliferation of widened or newly built roads which had electricity facilities and/or electric posts in the middle of their lanes.


Last Monday, July 10, or four years since RA10531 was enacted, the DOE and DPWH finally issued a Joint Circular which provides guidelines on the determination of compensation for Electric Cooperatives when their facilities are affected by government infrastructure projects. 


In the event of a dispute as to the amount, the Joint Circular also outlines the procedure for depositing part of the amount with the National Electrification Administration to prevent delays in the implementation of infrastructure projects. The Joint Circular also penalizes Electric Cooperatives if they delay or refuse to remove/relocate their electric facilities. 

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