Benitez heads Capitol negotiators in takeover of cyber center mgm’t

The Negros Occidental provincial government is aiming to take over the management of its Negros First CyberCentre (NFCC) in Bacolod City by January 2021, Provincial Administrator Rayfrando Diaz said today, December 7.

Negros Occidental Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson has designated a team headed by former Rep. Alfredo Benitez, to begin negotiations for its take over from the Negros Property Management and Development Corp. (NPMDC), Diaz said.

Benitez is the Negros Occidental provincial government consultant for investments and economic enterprises.

An agreement is expected this month that would allow the Capitol’s takeover hopefully by January 1, Diaz said.

Lacson in November issued a notice to terminate the provincial government’s joint venture agreement with NPMDC that allowed the private firm to manage the NFCC for the last four years, saying it has been grossly disadvantageous to the economic interests of the provincial government.

The governor, in his notice of termination, said the NPMDC’s minimum annual remittance of 20 percent of the NFCC gross revenues but not less than P15 million is not economically profitable to the provincial government.

The amount barely covers the amortization of the loan for the construction of the NFCC, Lacson said.

The takeover of the NFCC will allow the provincial government to earn a lot more to pay for the P607 million loan for its construction, Diaz said.

The provincial government has in the past also had to pay for improvements made at the NFCC despite the JVA, he added

The NPMDC, chaired by Salvador Enriquez Jr., in its reply to the notice of termination, said there is a meeting of the minds on dissolving the JVA and the turning over of the NFCC to the provincial government, he said.

Enriquez said he would send a team to discuss the details with the provincial government representatives, Diaz added.

A meeting between Benitez and the team of Enriquez is expected this week via Zoom, he said.

The Capitol will honor the contracts of those currently leasing sections of the NFCC, Diaz assured.

Diaz also said there are a lot of new potential BPO tenants who also want to lease spaces at the NFCC when the Capitol takes over its management.

The provincial government’s running of the NFCC will allow it to also generate more jobs, Diaz said.*

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