Press Release
February 25, 2010


Amid fears of widespread power shortage due to El Niño, Senator Edgardo J. Angara said the current energy situation does not necessitate Congress to grant President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo emergency powers to deal with the issue.

"There are already sufficient laws to respond to the crisis and the President has existing powers to harness all resources and take all measures to cope with this temporary crisis," he said.

Speaking at the weekly forum "Kapihan sa Senado" Angara said the power crisis has long been felt in some parts of the country like Mindanao. "We are already experiencing the ill effects of El Niño in the form of big drop in water levels and damage to agriculture. This is not an artificial crisis and it doesn't take a scientist to know that."

The former Agriculture Secretary warned that the temperature may hit 40 degrees Celsius due to El Niño. He, however, stressed that "while the situation is urgent, it is not an emergency as El Niño is a seasonal phenomenon that happens every six to seven years." The powers of the Energy Secretary and administrative agencies like Napocor and PNOC are enough to cope with this temporary crisis. Angara said the President can also tap the P12-B calamity fund that was inserted by Congress into the 2010 national budget to carry out projects to mitigate weather-related calamities and rehabilitate affected areas.

Angara also called on some politicians to stop finger pointing and blame passing, "we have to act now and concentrate our efforts in implementing effective energy and water saving programs"

He added, "Unless the situation poses imminent danger to the nation, it will be difficult to convene a special session because it's already campaign season and it will be hard to get solons to come back to Manila and attend session."

News Latest News Feed