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North Cotabato cops fence NGCP tower to prevent bombings

Local News • 17:36 PM Sat Mar 12, 2016
Edwin O. Fernandez
Senior Insp. Junete Napat, Aleosan cop chief, checks on bamboo fence around NGCP Tower 63, bomb last March 1, 2016 (Aleosan MPS)

ALEOSAN, North Cotabato –- As preventive measures against attacks on steel towers of the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP), police authorities here have fenced the structure using indigenous materials. This is our contribution, this is also community efforts to spare us from brownouts,” Senior Inspector Jun Napat, Aleosan town police chief, said. Napat said so far two NGCP steel towers have been fenced by bamboo poles with barbed wire to bar lawless elements from putting improvised bombs. These are NGPC Towers 63 and 68. Tower 63 was bombed twice, on January 14 and March 1 this year but the structure was not toppled. Tower 68 was bombed on December 10 last year. The fencing of steel towers was the idea of Napat which Aleosan Mayor Vicente Sorupia Jr supported along with the village officials of Pagangan and the NGCP. Napat said police officers and villagers of Aleosan jointly worked on the fencing of two steels and surrounded by barbed wires. The fence stands at six feet. The LGU produced the bamboo and barbed wire, the police helped in putting up the barriers and a watchman from the village was assigned to each tower, mobile phones from LGU and allowance from NGCP, it was all bayanihan,” he said. Our plan is to fence all the 17 towers within Aleosan, our area of operation,” Napat added. I hope NGCP will fence all structures with concrete ones, like the Telcos cellsites, he said, adding the bamboo fence would not last long.The structures carry the 138 KV line from Kabacan NGCP sub-station to Simuay sub-station in Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao, passing by the towns of Pagalungan and Pagagawan, both in Maguindanao, Pikit, Midsayap, Libungan, Pigcawayan in North Cotabato. Authorities also remained clueless on the motive but investigators are looking at road right of way claim issue and extortion. Last year, 14 steel pylons were bombed in Lanao del Norte, Maguindanao, North Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat and Marawi City. Of the 14, eight were toppled. NGPC spokesperson for southern Mindanao Melfrance Bambi” Capulong has repeatedly appealed to all residents and local government units in areas where there are steel towers to help prevent bombings. Repair works of each tower costs NGCP about P2 million and it will be passed on to consumers as provided by law. (Edwin O. Fernandez)

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