Casiño to Pres. Aquino: Build gov’t-owned power plants

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SENATORIAL candidate Teddy Casiño today took Pres. Benigno Aquino III to task for the impending power outages in Luzon, saying he should have learned from the term of his mother, former president Corazon Aquino, whose failure to build additional power plants caused prolonged black outs in the early 90’s.

The solon was reacting to the statement of Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) chairman Manuel Pangilinan who said yesterday that we should expect frequent blackouts across Luzon beginning this year if no new sources of power are established to support the country’s economic growth.

“The Aquino government should have started building power plants since 2010 to prevent  the Mindanao power crisis and the impending one in Luzon. Government should play an active role in the power generation sector and should in fact be the one leading it. Pres. Aquino should allow the National Power Corporation (Napocor) to again build and run power plants as public utilities and not wait for private corporations who in the past have exploited such shortages to bag onerous supply contracts and impose exorbitant rates,” said Casiño.

“It is time to abandon the dictates of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank (WB) on privatizing the power sector because it has only resulted in higher power rates for Filipinos. As it is, the Philippines already has the most expensive power rates in Asia,” said the Makabayan senatorial bet.

“I just hope that Meralco’s warning is not just a prelude for another power rate hike and the Aquino administration would heed our call for more sustainable power plants and use more renewable sources of energy,” ended Casiño.

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