Monday, August 23, 2010

Filipino urban poor group furious over sugar, cooking oil price hike

DAVAO CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / Aug. 23, 2010) - A Filipino urban poor group called Kalipunan ng Damayang Mahihirap said it is furious over the current increased prices of sugar and cooking oil, and on the proposed price hike of the National Food Authority rice.

The group pointed that the Aquino administration should prove its “daang matuwid” policy by putting stricter price control in the costs of basic commodities.

“We already suffered greatly during the last decade-rule of the Arroyo regime. Now, we are again dismayed with the Aquino administration’s neglect to check and regulate prices of basic commodities. Sugar, cooking oil, electricity have become expensive,” Franchie Buhayan, spokesperson of Kadamay, said in a statement.

Buhayan said newsreports peg the price of a 50-kilo sack of brown sugar at P1,650-P1,700 from its previous price which is P1,400-P1,650 while the price of white sugar has increased by P100 per sack. Cooking oil is up to P61 per kilo from its P48 per kilo last week.

Earlier, the Aquino administration is proposing to increase the price of NFA rice in order to generate more income for the government.

Buhayan said: “Enough of the pro-poor rhetorics. What we need are concrete actions to alleviate our suffering.”

Kadamay is challenging the Aquino administration to approve the P125 legislated wage increase in order to uplift the purchasing capacity of the people amidst price hike. The group also demands that the government should eradicate cartels of rice, sugar,oil and other commodities because these are behind the skyrocketing of prices.

Kadamay likewise pointed that, in the coming weeks to come, oil prices are expected to soar again that would trigger the domino effect of increasing prices of other commodities.

“We have been calling for the repeal of the Oil Deregulation law which previous presidents have failed to do. We are demanding to the Aquino administration to heed our clamor.”

Buhayan also cited that the government has been making a lot of money on the tax it puts to every litter of oil--2 pesos automatically goes to the government or an average of 140 million per day.

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