The restoration crew from Cagayan Valley take a photo shoot while a vehicle is on its way to the Visayas and Mindanao to help in restoring power damaged by Typhoon Odette. (PHILRECA contributed photos)

By VINCE JACOB VISAYA, Correspondent

CAUAYAN CITY, Isabela-In an effort to help rebuild the Typhoon Odette-stricken areas in the Visayas and Mindanao, the electric cooperatives in Luzon had sent crew members and donated financial assistance through the Task Force: Tulong Kapatid project, the chairperson of Philippine Federation of Electric Cooperatives (PHILFECO) said on Sunday.

Aside from helping to restore electric power in Odette-ravaged provinces, cooperatives in Luzon had also set aside assistance for damaged areas, according to David Solomon Siquian, Philippine Federation of Rural Cooperatives chairperson and Isabela Electric Cooperative II general manager. 

The ISELCO II, which is one of the electric cooperatives in the region, has sent foreman Roderick Manabat and linemen Reymond Martinez, Angelito Tabuno, Villy Vone Cariaga, Rickson Allapitan, and Ric Rombaoa aboard a 3,500-kg vehicle to beef up the group from Cagayan Valley, he added.

The Isabela Electric Cooperative I (ISELCO I) Cagayan Electric Cooperatives 1 and 2 (CAGELCO 1 and 2), Nueva Vizcaya Electric Cooperative and the North East Luzon Electric Cooperatives Association (NELECA) also comprised the restoration teams.

The PHILFECO Board has also allocated P100,000 each to the Odette-damaged electric cooperatives (Cooperative Development Authority-registered power cooperatives) such as Negros Occidental, Negros Oriental, Palawan and Guimaras. 

Rural cooperative workers also sent personal donations and cash assistance to National Electrification Administration-supervised electric cooperatives.

Earlier, the groups of electric cooperatives (ECs) have been tapped by the Philippine Rural Electric Cooperatives Association Inc. (Philreca) in partnership with the One EC Network Foundation to deploy linemen to provinces affected by Typhoon Odette.

The member-electric cooperatives through their Regional Task Force commanders had reactivated the task force teams with safety officers for deployment prior to the jump-off recently.

In 2002, the Task Force Kapatid was launched as a volunteer service by rural cooperatives which seek to group together to mobilize their personnel and logistics to assist other ECs needing immediate rehabilitation of distribution lines in times of calamities in order to speedily restore power service to member-consumer-owners and alleviate the plight of the rural folks.#