Thursday, June 09, 2005

NR0609:2 nrs on meralco First Family scandals

Mula sa Tanggapan ni Anakpawis Rep. Crispin Beltran
News Release June 9, 2005
House of Representatives, South Wing Rm 602
931-6615 Ina Alleco R. Silverio,Chief of Staff
Cellphone number 09213907362

Solon demands COA audit Meralco books;
says GMA, First Family's shenanigans worsening econ crisis

Anakpawis Representative Crispin Beltran today joined protests led by Anakpawis party-list and other organizations affiliated with the alliance People Opposed to Warrantless Electricity Rates (POWER) continue to assail the 14.67 centavo per kWh rate increase proposed by the Manila Electric Company (Meralco). The said groups, including the Kilusang Mayo Uno, Kadamay, Gabriela, Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas, Piston, Courage, AGHAM and BAYAN, staged a "rain-or-shine picket-rally" in front of the Meralco Building along Ortigas Avenue.

The protestors reiterated their opposition to the private firm's rate hike proposal to the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC). Beltran said that the rally was held to "intensify the fight against unwarranted rate increases", in addition to "signifying the formal intent to oppose the Meralco rate hike through filing a complaint at the ERC" last week. "Meralco's rate hike is based on the company's sheer greed and its unscrupulousness to make consumers pay for its expansion projects. This is a public crime - it's practically theft."

Beltran said that a government audit of Meralco was long overdue. "Before Meralco can jack its rates some more, the government, particularly the Commission on Audit, should step in and audit Meralco's records. The Supreme Court (SC) itself, the highest judicial body in this country, has ordered Meralco to open up its books for auditing-something which it has yet to comply with. Also, Meralco even dares to mock the legal process by applying for a new rate hike which is definitely higher than its previous ERC-approved rate hike, which has later declared illegal and unjustified by the SC? Meralco dares to hike its rates when it has not even completed the SC order for the refund of the P90 million collected from consumers," he explained.

In the meantime, the veteran labor leader said that the longer Pres. Arroyo remains in power, the speedier the deterioration of the economy will be. He said that since the President's taped conversations ordering the implementation of large-scale electoral fraud was exposed, the peso lost more ground against the US dollar. Already, the controversy has caused the peso value to fall to 54.780 pesos to the dollar, after closing at a two-week low of 54.670 on Wednesday.

"It's the scandals and controversies involving the President and members of the First Family led by First Gentleman Mike Arroyo, Rep. Mikey Arroyo and Rep. Iggy Arroyo that are causing the peso value to further slide. This and the political jitters triggered by talk of possible fresh attempts to destabilize the government," he said.

"President Arroyo should not wait for another EDSA uprising to unseat her from Malacanang. Constantly falling economic indicators point directly towards her and her family's various acts of corruption and mismanagement of the government . Another series of oil price hikes has begun, and electricity rates are hitting the roof. Pres. Arroyo is causing the economy to fall apart, bringing down the quality of life of Filipinos. She should give in to the popular demand and step down. Her already widespread unpopularity can only worsen as more details of the electoral fraud she and her allies orchestrated in May 2004 are revealed," he concluded.#


Post a Comment

<< Home