GENERAL SANTOS CITY – The city council here will launch an inquiry over the increasing accumulated electric bill of the city police office that already reached around PHP8 million as of July.
City Councilor Jose Edmar Yumang, chair of the committee on public order and safety, said Wednesday he will schedule a series of public hearings to determine the reason behind the mounting arrears and set possible solutions.
He said the inquiry will focus on how the city police’s electric charges doubled from PHP4 million to PHP8 million “in just a few months.”
“We will ask them to present copies of their accumulated bills and there will be a site inspection to check the situation in their offices,” Yumang said in a radio interview.
The city police office sought the council’s assistance last month for the payment of its electric bill arrears.
The arrears were based on the unpaid electric consumption under previous directors of the city’s eight police stations, the city police headquarters, and other national support units in Camp Fermin Lira.
Col. Gilberto Tuzon, the city police director, said their arrears with the South Cotabato 2 Electric Cooperative (Socoteco 2) mainly increased due to the interest and penalty charges.
He said the unpaid bill was only around PHP4 million when he was designated as acting city police director in September last year.
Yumang said the local government is already working on settling the arrears with Socoteco 2 but said they need to make sure that it will not happen again.
The official reiterated that the city government remains committed to providing the necessary assistance to the city police office to enhance its operations.
The local government has been providing fuel subsidies to local police stations and units, and assists them in terms of logistics, including the purchase of firearms and other vital equipment. (PNA)