Group detonates bomb near NGCP tower

by Alena Mae S. Flores – January 18, 2016 at 11:20 pm

from Manila Standard

Power grid operator National Grid Corp. of the Philippines said Monday a bomb exploded near another transmission power in Lanao del Sur province, aggravating the power situation in Mindanao.

National Grid said in its latest advisory Tower 50 of Agus 2-Kibawe 138kV line in Barangay Pantar, Dimayon Bubong, Lanao del Sur was damaged by a bomb early Monday morning.

“Fortunately, the tower did not topple. Restoration of Tower 50 will commence as soon as the area is secured,” it said.

This is the second bombing incident that targeted National Grid’s transmission towers this year, as an unidentified group also placed a bomb on Tower 63 along the Kabacan-Sultan Kudarat 138-kV line on Jan. 14.

Meanwhile, the Agus 2- Kibawe line has been cut off since December after Tower 25 was bombed and toppled on Christmas eve.

National Grid said the bombings aggravated the power situation in the region.

“The incoming 600 megawatts of generation capacity from new power plants will not be sufficient to relieve Mindanao of its energy problems unless the bombing of transmission facilities are stopped. Sufficient supply and strong transmission are both integral to a stable power situation,” it said.

Among the power projects that are expected to come online in Mindanao this year are the 200-MW Sarangani Energy Corp. power plant, 405-MW Misamis coal plant of FDC Utilities Inc. and 150-MW plant of San Miguel Corp.

National Grid said Tower 25 located in Ramain, Lanao del Norte which was damaged by a bomb on Dec. 24, 2015, still needed to be repaired as the company awaited the resolution of the right-of-way issues between landowner Sambitori family and government-owned National Transmission Corp.

The landowner denied National Grid access to Tower 25 as it demanded payment from TransCo for their decades-old claim. The dispute remains unresolved to this day.

National Grid asked for the expedited resolution between landowners and TransCo to begin repairs of the facility soon.

“NGCP appeals to the public, local and national government, PNP and AFP, and local community leaders to help identify the perpetrators of the bombings, and to negotiate with uncooperative landowners, to prevent longer power interruptions,” it said.