Friday, August 27, 2010

Urban poor group opposes power rates hike in Davao City

DAVAO CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / Aug. 27, 2010) – A Filipino urban poor group called the Kalipunan ng Damayang Mahihirap on Friday criticized the Davao Light and Power Company for not telling the public the truth about the real score over the current power rates.

It said the DLPC announced that it will increase its distribution charge to 0.08 per kilowatt hour starting in August, but Franchie Buhayan, spokesperson of Kadamay, said it was simply not true.

“It is not true that DLPC’s power rate hike is only 0.08 per kilowatt hour. Based on our previous bill, before the power rate increased was imposed, the distribution charge is 1.2409 per kilowatt hour. In our August, it went up by 1.570 per kilowatt hour or an increase of 0.3311 per kilowatt hour which is much bigger,” Buhayan said.

Buhayan said aside from the increase in the distribution charge, the DLPC also increased its supply charge by 0.0327 per kilowatt hour. This increase was not announced to public, she said.

She said her group has begun a public campaign that will oppose power rate hikes through forums in various villages and organizations. “The campaign will zoom in on the ill-effects of the EPIRA or the Electric Power Industry Reform Act of 2001,” she said, adding, the EPIRA is one of former President Gloria Arroyo’s hated legacies.

The law was also opposed before by President Benigno Aquino when he was still a congressman. “We are challenging the Aquino administration to repeal this law,” Buhayan said.

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