TAGUM CITY—The Court of Appeals upheld that the group affiliated with the National Electrification Administration (NEA) is the only “legal and legitimate group” to supervise the Davao del Norte Electric Cooperative or DANECO.

In its 10-page decision, the Court also junked the motion for reconsideration filed by rival cooperative registered at the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA) saying its registration is “misplaced.”

The decision was released Tuesday, June 24, and signed by Associate Justices Edgardo A. Camello, Oscar V. Badeles and Henri Jean Paul B. Inting.

But Daneco-CDA OIC-General Manager Gerald Osorio said the “decision denying the motion for reconsideration is not final and executory. Our legal team is now preparing for a motion for certiorari to be submitted to the Supreme Court within the reglementary period.”

“We are not worried and the said decision is a welcome development in our fight for justice as the matter could now be elevated to the Supreme Court,” Osorio said.

The dispute stemmed from the order of NEA Board of Administrators on April 30, 2012, to remove all the 10 members of the Daneco Board and its Manager.

Aggrieved by such decision, on May 3, the Daneco-CDA faction filed a case for Certiorari with Prayer for Temporary Restraining Order and Preliminary Injunction before Branch 3, Regional Trial Court (RTC) in Nabunturan town, Compostela Valley Province.

Nabunturan RTC granted the TRO.

In its motion for reconsideration, the Daneco-CDA claimed that NEA’s order to remove officials constituted  “grave abuse amounting to lack or in excess of jurisdiction” and that it was not final as the officers “could still validly exercise their powers and functions.”

On May 20, 2012, the Daneco-CDA faction conducted a referendum in its franchise areas namely: Island Garden City of Samal, Davao del  Norte And Laak, Compostela Valley, Tagum City, Davao del Norte and Mawab, Maco,Mabini and Pantukan, Compostela Valley Province.

The Court of Appeals ruled the referendum illegal saying that the “nullity of the referendum flows as natural consequence of the nullity of the actions taken by the ousted/suspended board of directors of Daneco.”

In an interview, Atty. Jorge Rapista, Daneco-NEA Legal Counsel, told Davao Today, that “clearly the Court of Appeals in effect declared also that the call and conduct of referendum by the respondents and their act of registering Daneco with CDA and all acts done after their removal from office on May 2, 2012 were all null and void and have no force and legal effect.” (Mart D. Sambalud/davaotoday.com)

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