The Department of Energy is beset by a “brain drain” as a result of “poaching of energy officials by private companies,” according to Rep. Arnel Ty of the LPG Marketers Association.
“The DoE has been losing managers who are now working for private corporations whose business activities are being regulated by the department,” said Ty, a House deputy minority leader.
Several Energy department undersecretaries, assistant secretaries and directors left their jobs to work for private petroleum firms, power producers and distribution utilities in the past years, he noted.
“The poaching has somewhat weakened the DoE as a regulator. Our sense is, the individuals in charge of enforcing our energy laws have become reluctant to reprimand or warn violators who could be their future employers,” he said.
He said there is a need to amend the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees, or Republic Act 6713, to discourage “poaching.”
Ty also slammed the lack of enforcement of a DoE circular requiring liquefied petroleum gas importers to maintain at all times at least seven days of in-country, ready-to-market inventory, plus 45 days of inbound shipment.
“Enforcement of the circular is absolutely imperative because we as a country import more than 80 percent of our LPG requirements,” he said.
“If the DoE does not properly manage our supply of the cooking gas, the risk of a temporary shortage and profiteering by abusive suppliers is always there to the detriment of consumers.”
According to Ty, some parts of Metro Manila experienced an insufficiency of LPG supplies when Typhoon ‘‘Lando’’ hit Luzon last week.
Liquigaz Philippines Corp., a big importer of the cooking fuel, ran out of ready-to-market supplies because the arrival of a shipment was delayed by the storm, he said.
“This would not have happened if the DoE is rigorously enforcing the circular on mandatory inventory levels at all times,” he added.