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October 9, 2014

TV 5 NEWS: Palace assures emergency powers for energy crunch won't be misused

MANILA, Philippines - Malacanang Palace gave assurances on Monday that the grant of emergency powers to the Executive to deal with a power shortfall next year will not pave the way for anomalies.

There has been concern about this happening, especially in the handling of some P6 billion expected to be used to rent generator sets and contract additional power in order to fill an estimated shortfall of 600 megawatts.

In a text message, presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said lawmakers must look at all possible options to address the impending problem. 

It is reasonable to expect that all parties involved in addressing the issue would automatically strive for transparency, knowing that they will have to undergo scrutiny by the joint congressional power commission, said Lacierda.

Palace officials reacted to a statement of LPGMA party-list representative and deputy minority leader Arnel Ty, saying the budget allocated for the gensets and fuel is at risk of being misused.

Ty also doubted the need for generator sets, noting that under the interruptible load program (ILP) that the Executive has been pushing, the shortfall could already be filled.

Under the ILP, big companies that have their own generators will be encouraged to use these so that they no longer need to connect to the grid.

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