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MENRE-BARMM steps in energy crisis of Lanao Sur

MARAWI CITY, Lanao del Sur (PIA)--As all stakeholders and even the provincial government have taken part in the issue of power all over the province of Lanao del Sur, the Ministry of Environment, Natural Resources and Energy (MENRE) of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) has likewise made its move to help overcome the struggle and push for a plan so that it would never be encountered again. 

In his message delivered by Lanao del Sur Provincial Environment, Natural Resources, and Energy Officer Asmarie Labao, MENRE Minister Akmad Brahim said the concern of electricity is not new, stating that several approaches were already been introduced but this has still become a perennial problem.

The current challenge now is the outstanding debt of the Lanao del Sur Electric Cooperative, Inc. (LASURECO) which is estimated to be worth P13.1 billion as of June 30 this year and has given the threat of a total cut-off all over the province if left unpaid. 

With this, Brahim stressed the optimism of the Bangsamoro government, conveying that the province will recover from this through the power of unity among all citizens here. 

“We believe that through the effort of different sectors, including but not limited to the Lanao del Sur government and the BARMM, we will have a better solution to this energy problem in the province. Your government today is doing its very best to provide a long-term solution,” he said. 

As part of their dedication to addressing the energy issue in the BARMM, the Minister shared that a workshop on special analysis for infrastructural planning was spearheaded wherein seven electric cooperatives in the region which included the LASURECO and another ailing electric utility in the region, the Maguindanao Electric Cooperative, Inc. (MAGELCO), to train them to use the geographical information system to gather data that would be utilized in formulating analysis for infrastructure development, and creating technical studies for possible interventions that are financially and operationally viable. 

He added that BARMM Chief Minister Ahod Ebrahim also addressed a request letter to the secretary of the Department of Energy (DOE) and the Department of Finance (DOF), and the president and chief executive officer of the Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corporation (PSALM) dated June 7, 2022 for the recalling and curtailment of the notice of disconnection for the LASURECO and the MAGELCO. 

Meanwhile, the BARMM government is eyeing the creation of a new distribution entity that will mirror the services offered by LASURECO

Brahim said this shall be pursued within the transition or after the regular parliamentary elections in the BARMM in the year 2025. 

He also said that the establishment of an interim structure is targeted to cover some of the electrification needs of the people. 

Noting all the aforementioned steps, the Minister emphasized that the BARMM through the MENRE would always strive to advance enough power resources that all the constituents truly deserve to have. 

“We shall be working too hard so that our plans and our future initiatives will be realized and implemented. Rest assured that Lanao del Sur will have a bright future as we work hand in hand to deliver the best energy services we can have for the Bangsamoro people,” he said. (CRG/PIA-10/Lanao del Sur)

About the Author

Claire Gigje

Information Officer I

Region 10

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