“We must take note that MORE Power’sfranchise in Republic Act 11212 provides that PECO must first settle itsobligations to the consumers before wrapping up its operations,” the groupsaid. “We cannot rely on MORE because it is not bound to settle such obligationsto us when it eventually takes over the distribution services.” The group also questioned the speedwith which MORE Power was granted a provisional authority to operate by theEnergy Regulatory Commission (ERC), emphasizing their concern that it couldbecome the basis for MORE Power to bill consumers. On the other hand, MORE Power enteredthe energy industry just two years ago, and at the time it was a small-scalemining company by the name of MORE Mineral Corp.PECO is not alone in its proclamation that MORE Power does not have thetechnical capability to operate the power distribution facilities. Section 17of Republic Act 11212 states that PECO “shall in the interim be authorized tooperate the existing distribution system.”Judge Emerald Requiña-Contreras of the Regional Trial Court, Branch 23 evendeclared in an addendum to the Writ of Possession she issued earlier that “theoperation should still be handled by PECO personnel who have the technicalexpertise.” Netizens were quick to take to socialmedia their grievances with the slow service. ILOILO City – Power consumers here areoutraged by the brownouts taking place just one week after ports magnateEnrique Razon’s MORE Electric and Power Corp. (MORE Power) took over theoperations of Panay Electric Co.’s (PECO) five substations. In an advisory released on MOREPower’s Facebook page, the company noted that it took more than two hours tofinish the restoration of unscheduled power interruptions in barangays SantoNiño Sur, Santo Niño Norte and Calaparan in Arevalo district, and Barangay Calumpangin Molo district.MORE Power attributed the power interruption to a “momentary line fault”although experts said the resumption of power should have been much earlier. On March 6, following MORE Power’stakeover, Judge Contreras ordered MORE to return the operations to PECO,stating that she was still uncertain of MORE’s technical capability.“The Regional Trial Court of Mandaluyong has already said that what MORE Poweris trying to do is unconstitutional, but they keep using misrepresentations andblatant lies to force their way in,” stressed PECO head of Public Engagementand Government Affairs Marcelo Cacho. “MORE Power claims it can do what we do when clearly cannot, and this is considering that they unsuccessfully tried to pirate our technical experts,” says Panay Electric Co.’s head of Public Engagement and Government Affairs Marcelo Cacho. IAN PAUL CORDERO/PN Some consumers complained that MOREPower was not responsive to queries on the company’s steps to rectify thesituation, with Pol Ibarreta lamenting, “Walana si MORE ga-reply sa Facebook.”I-Konsumidor, a group of power consumers in this city, felt that the powerstruggle between MORE Power and PECO is putting consumers at a disadvantage. He added: “They even claim that theycan do what we do when they clearly cannot, and this is considering that theyunsuccessfully tried to pirate our technical experts.”/PN “Anoba MORE? Bago pa lang kamo, duha na ka oras brownout di,” posted Rolando Dabao, former Iloilo City councilor.“Expect brownouts pa MORE,” commentedVictor Bernardo. “MORE is running the facilities butPECO is the one which has contracts with power generators. These contractscannot be assigned to MORE,” said the group.“If MORE will start billing us after two months, what will be the basis oftheir rates? We don’t know because there was no application nor did we attendor even learn of any public hearing on their application for provisionalauthority to enter into a Power Supply Agreement,” added the group.Before MORE Power secured its franchise, PECO was the sole power provider inIloilo City for 95 years, tracing back to the post-World War 2 rehabilitationefforts.
DOMINATE YOUR DRAFT: Ultimate 2019 Fantasy Cheat SheetSporting News Fantasy podcasts available on Youtube, Soundcloud and iTunes.Fantasy Football Podcast: TE previewTimestamps:General draft strategy at TE (1:58): It makes sense to jump on Travis Kelce, who produces like a WR1, but after him, who’s worth targeting early?Our top trio of tight ends (10:16): Zach Ertz and George Kittle join Kelce at the top…but one of them is a bigger concern than the other.The messy second tier (14:00): Who knows how these names will shake out at the end of the season (although we feel really good about Evan Engram)? If Trey Burton or Eric Ebron was the best or worst in this second group, we wouldn’t be surprised, especially since one of us has a personal vendetta against Ebron.MORE SEASON PREVIEW PODCASTS:QB | RB | WR | D/STSleepers (26:35): We like taking advantage of early-season suspension to get Chris Herndon at a value, and there’s clearly a gaping need for pass-catchers in Miami that Mike Gesicki can capitalize on. They couple with a pair of No. 2 TEs who would have huge value if they moved to the top of their respective depth charts. When it comes to our 2019 tight end rankings, there’s a huge mess in the middle tiers. One owner’s sleeper is another’s bust, and you can get by with a number of different draft strategies. On this positional preview podcast, we try to bring the TE position into more focus, breaking down all the key players — including several who won’t be on the field in Week 1. (Lookin’ at you, Gronk.)Listening to a podcast about tight ends isn’t anyone’s idea of a non-stop party, but when your opponent has Travis Kelce and you have Delanie Walker, you may wish you had paid a bit more attention ahead of your draft. Do-not-draft TEs (36:06): Is Greg Olsen too old? Will David Njoku get enough targets? Can George Kittle possible return value at this current ADP?Bold predictions: (42:22): We predict top-10 seasons for one tight end who can’t stay healthy and another who’s currently retired. The other guys (50:00): If we didn’t talk about them yet, we do here. That includes Hunter Henry finally being his “the man” with the Chargers and returning plodders Delanie Walker and Jason Witten.
Close to one year after the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) completed an investigation into the sale of lands, the Unit on Thursday instituted legal proceedings against two former senior Government officials.These included former Finance Minister, Dr Ashni Singh and former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the National Industrial and Commercial Investments Limited (NICIL) Winston Brassington.The duo will now face charges for “misconduct in public office: contrary to commonFormer Finance Minister, Dr Ashni Singhlaw.” These charges were instituted based on the sale of three plots of State land.The three charges advanced by SOCU were not read by Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan when the case was called on Thursday since the men were not in the jurisdiction. Representing Dr Singh was Attorney Anil Nandlall, while Attorney Stanley Moore appeared on behalf of Brassington.The case was adjourned to May 7, to allow the defence lawyers to contact their clients concerning the charges.In the three charges advanced by SOCU and seen by Guyana Times, it was outlined that Singh being the Chairman of NICIL and Brassington being the CEO in December of 2008, by way of Agreement of Sale and Purchase, sold to Scady Business Corporation a track of State land (4.7 acres) being a portion of Plantation Liliendaal, Greater Georgetown, for the sum of $150,000,000 “knowing that the said property was valued at $340,000,000 by Rodrigues Architects Associate, a competent valuation officer.”Similarly, the other charge outlined that Singh and Brassington sold to Multicinemas Guyana Inc a plot of State land (10 acres) at Turkeyen, Greater Georgetown, for the sum of $185,037, 000 “without first having procured a valuation of the said property from a competent valuation officer.”Moreover, it was outlined that Singh and Brassington in 2009, by way of an Agreement of Sale and Purchase sold to the National Hardware Guyana Limited aFormer NICIL CEO Winston Brassigntontrack of Sate land (103 acres), being a portion of Plantation Liliendaal and Turkeyen for the sum of $598,659,398 (VAT exclusive) without first having procured a valuation of the said property from a competent valuation officer.However, during an interview with Guyana Times on Thursday, Attorney for Singh and Opposition parliamentarian Nandlall blasted SOCU on the fact that they had not, at any point, made contact with the individuals who were being investigated prior to the disclosure that charges will be laid.“Last year, on behalf of Ashni Singh, I wrote to SOCU informing them that I am the lawyer for Dr Singh and that should they require him to assist in any investigations, that I am prepared to make contact with him and that he stands willing and able to assist and participate in any investigation…I received no response to that letter… They called me late yesterday evening to indicate to me that Dr Singh will be charged,” he explained.Further, Nandlall asserted “since I sent that letter and during the (course) of whatever investigation they were conducting, no one attempted to make contact with Dr Singh.”UK High Commissioner Greg Quinn; Special advisor to SOCU, Sam Sittlington; along with two UK fraud experts who will be conducting the trainingNandlall, who also held the post of former Attorney General, also questioned why a criminal investigation of this type would be conducted and no attempt would be made to seek input from the person or persons who are the subject of the investigation.“You don’t investigate people behind their backs in a cloak and dagger fashion. That is not fair investigation. That is not how a democratic society works,” he said.Nandlall explained that under their posts at NICIL, the duo (Singh and Brassington) never acted on their own accord in any decisions regarding the sale of properties.“NICIL is a corporation in law, it is run by a Board. Ashni Singh, as Minister of Finance was ex-officio chair of that Board. Brassington was the CEO. That Board is a Government corporation. That Board does not act without the Government’s approval…Over the years, NICIL has sold dozens of properties and a particular methodology was always used. Brassington nor Ashni Singh ever acted on their own. They always acted upon the approval or direction of the Board that governed NICIL. That Board always received the support and approval of the Cabinet, which is the Government of Guyana,” he said.According to Nandlall, “all the procedures were complied with and three plots of land were sold… This is not a criminal offence. Where is the crime?”Moreover, he posited that this action by SOCU is nothing short of a “witch-hunt”, highlighting that he is positive that he will win this case, and as such, he hopes that the State is aware that civil suits will be filed for defamation of character.“This is another spate of witch-hunting that is taking place where the criminal justice system is being used as a political weapon by those in Government to persecute… and damage the reputation of two young Guyanese professionals.”“I hope the State will understand that they will have to pay millions of dollars at some point in time in compensation because civil suits are going to be filed when these charges are dismissed because destruction has been done to people’s characters and reputations and people are suffering anguish and stress as a result of these charges [that] are being instituted,” he asserted.