DANECO’S BAPAs UNDER LANIBA WRACKED WITH FUNDS’ ANOMALIES, LOSING MILLIONS

DEC 2-8, 2010

By Cha Monforte

At least nine Barangay Power Associations (BAPAs) which the Davao del Norte Electric Cooperative created years back to help collect power bills in remote villages have been wracked with fund anomalies as cash collections running to millions disappeared and allegedly being embezzled by BAPA officers with some of them already absconding to avoid prosecution.
The operation of BAPA is under the supervision and management of Institutional Service Department headed by former OIC general manager Allan Laniba whom Daneco board officials said would be included for his “laxity and command responsibility” in the forthcoming suit against the responsible BAPA officers.
As of September 2010 the unremitted collections of 9 BAPAs totaled to over P2.8 million in a report submitted by Laniba to the Daneco board of directors.
An unimpeachable Daneco source charged: “Daghang mga anomaliya ug gipangdispalko nga collection ang mga BAPA ug uban nila (opisyales) misibat na (A lot of anomalies and collections were embezzled by involved BAPA officers and some of them have already taken flight)”.
There is a continued failure of the involved officers to account and remit what they already collected from the power member-consumers, the source said.
Laniba was tagged to be lax and lenient in his supervision of the BAPAs.
An ISD personnel, in an interview, said that Laniba’s department has several staff including an auditor incharge for the BAPAs.
She said that the ISD regularly remits to the Daneco cashier what has been collected by the BAPAs.
Daneco board president Dean Briz, in separate interview, said that the board is now preparing to file court cases to responsible BAPA officers and Laniba would be included due to “laxity in management and command responsibility”.
Daneco’s board has already decided to abolish the BAPAs citing the fund anomalies, disadvantages and losses the BAPAs have been giving to Daneco, he said.
He added that three years ago the BAPAs were put under the management of the ISD headed by Laniba and the BAPAs’ attachment under ISD was the reason why Laniba was promoted as one of Daneco’s department managers.
The power cooperative has 50 BAPAs which will have their monitored days up until December 31, 2010 only.
Daneco deputy general manager Engr. Felix Hibionada, in separate interview, said that the “BAPAs are getting difficult to manage now” when they are already collecting big amount of money by over P100,000 per month unlike a small sum before.
He said that the BAPAs, which were created in early 90s, now turned out to be subsidized by Daneco at losing terms since BAPAs get 10-percent discount as incentive for helping Daneco in its power bill collection activities while Daneco is only getting 3-percent discount for prompt payments from its power suppliers.
“So lugi gyod ang Daneco mao nga tama ang board of directors sa ilang decision to terminate the BAPAs,” he said. Besides that there appears to be no accountability and no liability in place in BAPAs’ operations,” he added.
Engr. Hibionada also said that BAPAs before had been helpful in Daneco’s collection efficiency drive when the roads in remote barangays were not yet passable.
Many of the BAPAs are found in Samal Island. “The road in remote barangays is now OK,” said the deputy GM.
All the present BAPA officers were already called in meetings on BAPA abolition while the financial audit to each of them is ongoing at presstime, it was learned.
Efforts of the Valley & City Chronicle to reach Laniba for comments failed at presstime.
The Valley & City Chronicle has obtained the September 2010 report of Laniba on the BAPA where he listed the 9 BAPAs with unremitted collection, four of which are still targeted by the ISD “for massive collection and disconnection”.
For the rest, Laniba noted that his department has already “conducted assembly and massive collection and disconnection.”
Listed BAPAs with unremitted collections were in Sao-sao, Mawab having over P84.7 thousand, Mamangan, San Isidro having P43.7 thousand, Mabantao, Kapalong having over P466.7 thousand, Florida, Kapalong having over P698.8 thousand, Suawon, New Corella having over P247.0 thousand, Aguinaldo, Laak having over P107.5 thousand, San Miguel, Samal Island having over P829.0 thousand, Tag-upo, Pantukan having P316.6 thousand, and Sto. Nino, New Corella having over P41.7 thousand. The unremitted collections totaled P2,846,303.32. (Rural Urban News/Cha Monforte)

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