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Wednesday, February 21, 2024

NGCP seeks lifting of Supreme Court’s TRO on Panay-Guimaras link

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Transmission operator National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP) asked the Supreme Court to lift the temporary restraining order against the P3 billion Panay-Guimaras 138-kiloVolt (kV) Interconnection Project and allow it to proceed and avoid undue delays.

The TRO prevents NGCP from carrying out one of the components crucial to the completion of the Panay-Guimaras project by December 2024.

“We are hopeful for the urgent resolution of the issue so as not to hamper the interconnection which will improve the region’s power transmission backbone,” the company said.

“When we plot the route of our transmission line projects, a major consideration is the existence of structures and residents. We aim to traverse areas that will cause least destruction to property, and result in the least number of persons displaced,” NGCP said.

The project is expected to address the load growth in Iloilo City and the need to accommodate the wind power plants in Guimaras.

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The SC earlier granted Iloilo Grain Complex Corp.’s (IGCC) petition for certiorari and prohibition with very urgent application for temporary restraining order and/or writ of preliminary injunction on Apr. 12, 2023.

It prevented NGCP from executing the writ of possession (WOP) and all other related orders issued by the Iloilo Regional Trial Court Branch 33 dated Dec. 12, 2022.

“The Supreme Court’s decision is disheartening as it hinders us from fulfilling our commitment to the residents of the islands of Panay and Guimaras, including fast-developing Iloilo City. Nevertheless, we steadfastly maintain our dedication to enhancing power transmission within the area despite this setback,” NGCP said.

Two tower sites fall under the property of IGCC and are considered crucial as the 1.7- kilometer transmission line will connect the proposed Iloilo substation to the Ingore cable terminal station which will serve as the connection point of the submarine cable to Guimaras Island.

“In the interest of the public’s convenience and the continuing growth of Iloilo, we will do what we can to push the immediate completion of this critical project,” said NGCP.

The Panay-Guimaras 138kV Interconnection is considered one of NGCP’s priority projects.

NGCP filed an expropriation case to acquire the IGCC property on Sept. 30, 2022, which was granted by Iloilo RTC Branch 33 on Nov. 3, 2022.

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