Concerned employees of the Benguet Electric Cooperative Employees Union (BELU) and the BENECO Supervisors Association (BSA) questioned the real intent of the Cordillera chapter of the National Association of Electric Consumers for Reforms (NASECORE) in furnishing concerned government agencies and ranking national government officials with a copy of the published malicious and libelous advertisement of a well-known personality that was printed in a locally circulated publication.
In their letter that was provided the concerned government agencies and ranking government officials, BELU president Jefferd Monang and BSA president Jason Wayet stated that evidently, the advertiser used his resources and influence to come out with the advertisement to justify his support for an applicant for the position of general manager of BENECO whose competency is highly questionable and whose appointment has been highly favored by the board of Administrators of the National Electrification Administration (NEA-BOA) even without passing the qualifications for the said post.
Further, the duo claimed that the malicious advertisement seem to evade the issue on the blatant violations committed by the NEA-BOA in insisting on the appointment of the unqualified applicant for general manager.
Both BELU and BSA officials pointed out that the alleged questionable acts being insinuated by the advertiser are sweeping conclusions bereft of evidence and that he sought comfort on a libelous paid advertisement instead of airing his gripes in the proper forum, an act that stinks of trial by publicity.
Earlier, BENECO officials assailed the paid advertisement of Dr. Reinaldo Bautista, Sr., president emeritus of the University of Baguio (UB), and questioned his intention in trying to hide under the guise of such paid advertisement instead of filing charges against concerned officials of the electric cooperative so that the latter could avail of the due process of law instead of being subjected to trial by publicity.
According to some BENECO insiders, they were not surprised by the timing of the paid advertisement as the same is too obvious to ignore since the publication was meant to seek public approval of Bautista’s candidate for general manager at the expense of maligning the established reputation of the electric cooperative and its officers.
Moreover, the concerned BENECO officers asserted that Bautista could have placed his concerns before the proper forum and he could have inquired from BENECO first, and if the electric cooperative ignored his queries and if its answers did not satisfy him as a consumer, then that is the time he should have filed the proper case.
The two officers argued that stripped of its baseless allegations, Bautista’s paid advertisement actually expresses sympathy for the alleged unqualified applicant who does not actually possess the experience and technical expertise to manage an electric cooperative and that the same was meant to stir acceptance of a new general manager with disregard to the recruitment and screening rules.
However, they emphasized that the selection of the general manager must not compromise the rules of selection. By HENT