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Democracy lights up Bangcalaan, Balabac as local people receives the 80 KW Diesel Powered Genset , part of the joint rural missionary electrification project of the Provincial Government of Palawan thru the leadership of Gov. Jose C Alvarez and the National Power Corporation (NPC) last week, 27 October 2019.
In a Barangay Assembly convened by Chairman Rolly Reyes, some 200 people gathered at the local gymnasium to discuss development initiatives and projects of Barangay Bancalaan. Also in attendance of the said activity were local officials of Balabac, the NPC, and the provincial government.
NPC OIC Engr. Romeo S Adriano enjoined the people to partner with the agency in maintaining the lines clean and help make sure that the generator is maximized in utility. Representing the governor, Engr. Ricardo Rodriguez highlighted the thrust of the Provincial Government of Palawan to energize the entire island province and hasten human development and progress.
SB Hajji Rudy Mohammad-Ain who represented Balabac Mayor Astami, also a resident of Bancalan, welcomed this development and expressed hope that this will boost progress in the area and enhance economic activity as investments are expected to come in with the energization.
Leading his people in gratitude for this development booster, Chairman Reyes consulted his constituents of their desired electrification hours. With three schedule options, direct democracy ruled to have the 8-hour electricity runs from 5pm to 1am to give students and families more productive use of power.
Talking about democracy and power, residents expressed varied reactions about real electricity running their wires. Mary Belle A. Cerilo, head teacher of Bancalaan, said that this 5pm to 1am schedule will give students more opportunities for after school learning and provide the needed current for home operations as residents are already home by this time.
Bancalaan is a barangay near Buliluyan Port, which has an economic base of agriculture, trade, fishing and sea weed farming. With a school whose electrification is sourced from solar power, it is a destination school of children of nearby islands.
One store owner now plans to buy a refrigerator-freezer and sell more food to residents, while an agar agar lady farmer expresses hope in doing away with her diesel burning light and her fear of accidental fire in her house. A Hajji expressed delight that the religious can be called to prayer using a public address system in their Masjid, a student looks forward to more time researching and studying, and a farmer hopes to sell shakes, ice water and other food to students of the Bancalaan School to augment his livelihood as farm products hit lowest price levels in the recent times.
In a test run prior to the inauguration, one barangay tanod shared how he almost felt he was in Puerto Princesa and not in Bancalaan as his electric fan powerfully blew and his lights lit brighter. He hopes street lights will be put up soon to enhance peace and order in the place. A simple snack seller is now poised to buy a freezer for chicken as storage issues can now be addressed.
Rural electrification on a grander scale allows irrigation, business and trade enhancement, medical service, telecommunication advancement and other technological upliftments that bolster service delivery and economic growth, not to mention information, infrastructure and other socio-economic upgrades.
With the inauguration of the facility in this 1000 plus household area, more people have expressed their desire to avail of the electrical service and participate in growth.
Carina Electrical Construction and Supply helped in the installation of lines and house wiring for this electrification project.
Photo by Majal Bautista
A special report by Majal Bautista, Batang Puerto Princesa.
Reporting from Bancalaan, Balabac