Buseco to name new head; Masongsong eyes party-list seat

Protesters seek the ouster of Buseco general manager Edgardo Masoingsong in 2009. He survived the calls for his removal. |File photo by Walter Balane/bukidnonreporter.wordpress.com.

Protesters seek the ouster of Buseco general manager Edgardo Masoingsong in 2009. He survived the calls for his removal. |File photo by Walter Balane/bukidnonreporter.wordpress.com.

MALAYBALAY CITY (Bukidnon News.Net/10 February)  A new general manager is expected to assume in the Bukidnon Second Electric Cooperative (Buseco) as controversial general manager Edgardo Masongsong is obliged to step down in relation to his bid for a congressional seat via the party-list system.

Fr. Danilo Paciente confirmed to Bukidnon News Saturday reports of a turn-over ceremony Monday morning. But he declined to name Masongsong’s successor.

Paciente said a selection committee took charge of choosing from seven applicants for the post.

He cited that the board confirmed three names in the short list, which they submitted to the National Electrification Administration. The NEA, he added, will have the final say who it will place to hold the chief executive position in the electric cooperative.

Paciente said they endorsed head of corporate planning division Deither Holf Arellano, technical services department manager  Engr. Artis Nikki Tortola, and Buseco Malaybalay manager Juancho Chiong.

He added that Masongsong had to vacate the post in relation to his bid for a congressional seat via the electric cooperatives’ party list representation 1-CARE  (1st Consumers Alliance For. Rural Energy, Inc.). Masongsong is the group’s first nominee.

Masongsong (righmost) with staff| http://buseco.coop/management-staff/

Masongsong (righmost) with staff| http://buseco.coop/management-staff/

Masongsong would have turned seven years as head of Buseco on August 3. On that day in 2006, he replaced Erico Bucoy as executive officer, supposedly up to yearend then.

He was part of a team from Earth Resource Management Group consultants tapped to look into a controversy in the Buseco leadership from 2004 to 2006. Another controversy beset Buseco from 2001 to 2004. ERMG arrived in January 2006 through a board of directors’ resolution.

On January 1, 2007, the board passed a resolution firing Masongsong with consultants to manage BUSECO up to June 2007.

Two months later, the board recommended Masongsong as probationary GM. Masongsong initiated reorganization of Buseco personnel and in January 2008 became a regular GM.  The NEA confirmed him GM on July 1, 2008.

Masongsong’s term also figured in controversy.

On September 15, 2009, The Prebyterial Council of the Diocese of Malaybalay passed a resolution requesting NEA to immediately remove Masongsong over alleged “conduct unbecoming of an officer” and “for betrayal of his oath of office”.

The resolution said that Buseco under Masongsong allegedly violated and defied orders of the Regional Trial Court concerning a civil case on the validity of Jonally Sto. Nińo’s election on December 22, 2007 as a member of the cooperative’s board of directors.

Then Gov. Jose Ma. R. Zubiri Jr backed the clergy in a letter to Bishop Honesto Pacana dated October 19.
He said he will personally bring to the attention of the National Electrification Administration chair “the alleged very untoward act of Mr. Masongsong and will try my best to work for his removal or suspension.”

On December 2, 2009 the Sanguniang Panlalawigan of Bukidnon declared Masongsong persona non grata.

Masongsong sued then Malaybalay Bishop Pacana and 51 priests of the diocese for libel following the publication of the clergy’s resolution calling for the former’s ouster. Masongsong accused the clergy of “malicious, baseless, unfounded, reckless, and wanton imputations,” which “resultantly defamed, caused dishonor and discredit” to his person.

The complaint affidavit was filed at the City Prosecutor’s Office of Toledo City in Cebu province.

Masongsong refuted the accusation saying the contents of the said resolution “are false, unfounded, and find no factual and legal basis …”.

After a dialogue, Masongsong was reported to have withdrawn the libel suit.

Aside from the clergy, Buseco also got a legal turf with two of its board members, Fr. Paciente of Sumilao and Oliver Aldovino of Impasug-ong.

According to its website, Buseco’s performance during the time of Masongsong “has been astonishing and beyond expectation.”

The cooperative cited 18 awards from 2007 to 2011 including Special Award for Category A+ electric cooperatives which it won five years in a row and “Secretary Francisco G. Silva Grand Leadership Award” to Masongsong. (Walter I. Balane/Bukidnon News.Net)

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