THE National Electrification Administration (NEA) said it has had to resort to online inspections of electrification projects in remote communities as travel remains restricted due to the pandemic.
Recently, the agency conducted a virtual Factory Acceptance Test (FAT) for the solar photovoltaic mainstreaming project of Iloilo III Electric Cooperative, Inc. (ILECO III) for off-grid communities.
“Due to the pandemic, the NEA is forced to look for other means of conducting the FAT without compromising the safety and health of its employees and partner ECs (electric cooperatives), while also ensuring the quality of equipment being procured,” NEA Manager Ernesto O. Silvano, Jr. said.
Mr. Silvano, who heads the agency’s total electrification and renewable energy development department, said the online inspection maintains the “same criteria and standards” observed during physical checks.
In April, NEA said the rollout of its P153-million off-grid solar power program experienced delays due to pandemic. It hopes to provide power to 5,000 rural households over the next five years.
Apart from ILECO III, other beneficiaries of the solar project are Busuanga Island Electric Cooperative, Inc. (BISELCO), Camarines Sur IV Electric Cooperative, Inc. (CASURECO IV), Cotabato Electric Cooperative, Inc. (COTELCO), and Zamboanga del Norte Electric Cooperative, Inc. (ZANECO). — Adam J. Ang