Hanna C. Lacsamana
The Benguet Electric Cooperative will seek the approval of member-consumers on two matters crucial to the process of conversion of the electric cooperative under the Cooperative Development Authority in its upcoming annual general membership assembly (AGMA) on Oct. 2.
The two matters the member-consumers will have to decide on are their approval on the revised Beneco constitution and by-laws and the collection of a share contribution from each member.
Beneco Institutional Services Department Manager, Atty. Delmar Cariño, said it is important for the member-consumers to give their approval because these are official acts needed to fully convert Beneco from being a non-stock, non-profit cooperative into a stock coop under the CDA.
He said while Beneco has already registered with CDA in November 2020, the process of registration is different from the conversion process.
Beneco’s CDA registration expired on May 2021 but was granted an extension of its certificate of registration by the CDA, which still recognizes its registration with the mandate it will already complete its conversion process.
“Once it is approved, the cooperative will start the collection of share equity from the MCOs. Once this is collected, the cooperative now will be able to complete the other requirements of conversion, such as (submission of an) affidavit stating the paid-up capital, that 25 percent of the paid-up capital has been subscribed, and 25 percent of the subscribed capital has been paid executed by the treasurer of the cooperative,” Cariño said.
The proposed share contribution from each member-consumer is P500, payable in five installments.
The Oct. 2 AGMA will be held mainly at the Pedro Dumol Hall, Beneco headquarters along South Drive, Baguio City and will be live-streamed in six major sites in Baguio and Benguet. Member-consumers have to register online to participate in the online meeting.
As explained earlier, Beneco decided to register and convert into a stock coop under CDA because of the changes in the business industry and the advent of Electric Power Industry Reform Act of 2001 which opened beneficial business opportunities for ECs.
An electric cooperative that is CDA-registered, however, remains under the supervision of the National Electrification Administration, another gray area, which CDA and NEA have to discuss to come up with guidelines defining their supervisory functions, Cariño said.
Out of 121 electric cooperatives in the country, 12 are already CDA-registered, but Beneco’s conversion is being monitored as it is being considered the model to be followed by other electric cooperatives.