Romualdez cautions vs grant of emergency powers to PNoy
- July 22, 2014
- Written by Ryan Ponce Pacpaco
- Published in Top Stories
HOUSE Independent Minority bloc leader and Leyte (1st District) Rep. Ferdinand Martin ‘FM’ G. Romualdez yesterday cautioned his colleagues against granting President Benigno Aquino III emergency powers to solve the looming power crisis. Romualdez said Energy Sec. Jericho Petilla should adequately support his recommendation to President Aquino that there is a need for emergency powers from Congress and declare that there is an emergency situation on the country’s power supply.
“This is a very serious matter that Congress should address with caution. The concerned government officials should back the necessity of giving emergency powers to the President,” said Romualdez.
Quezon City Rep. Winnie Castelo agreed with Romualdez as he underscored the need for the government to convince Congress about the necessity of granting emergency powers to the President.
“This is something Congress will have to consider with caution. The Executive department will have to explain and justify to Congress the urgency of the emerging situation. I am sure Secretary Petilla will be called to explain,” Castelo, a stalwart of the ruling Liberal Party (LP), said.
Speaker Feliciano “Sonny” Belmonte Jr. said his leadership will support the granting of emergency powers should President Aquino ask them, saying the proposal of Petilla was “overdue.”
“Petilla’s statement is overdue. Everybody has said it before he did. Yes, we will support if requested by the President. He should also specify what kind of emergency powers,” said Belmonte.
Eastern Samar Rep. Ben Evardone, who filed House Bill (HB) No. 3743 which seeks to grant President Aquino a one-year emergency powers to construct new government-owned power plants and suspend the imposition of value added tax (VAT) on electricity, also backed the recommendation of Petilla.
“The fear of several quarters that it might be abused is totally unfounded. The emergency powers will be limited to addressing the acute power supply shortfall only. I hope Congress will prioritize my HB 3743 allowing empowering the President to construct power plants,” said Evardone