Senator Antonio “Sonny” F. Trillanes IV has filed a bill seeking to grant emergency powers to President Benigno S. Aquino III to address the energy shortage in Mindanao.
“The negligence of the previous administration to the looming problem of energy in Mindanao has worsened the situation in Mindanao,” Trillanes said.
On top of this, the young legislator said, is the 10-year exemption from the privatization program of the power plants run by the state-owned National Power Corporation (NPC) and the postponement of the construction of the transmission line from Leyte to Surigao.
“This has led to the isolation of Mindanao from the national transmission grid and prevented the excess power in the Visayas from being transferred to the island,” Trillanes pointed out.
Under Senate Bill No. 3167, or to be known as the Electric Power Crisis Act of 2012, Trillanes proposes to allow the President to enter into negotiated contracts for the construction, repair, rehabilitation, improvement or maintenance of power plants, projects and facilities, subject to some safeguard provisions.
“Out of abundance of caution, however, this measure expressly prohibits the government from granting sovereign guarantee for the payment of obligations incurred by the independent power producers (IPPs),” Trillanes explained.
“Likewise, this measure prohibits the inclusion of the onerous take-or-pay or similar provision, which appeared to have been abused in the past,” he added.
According to the Bicolano senator, the rate of return on rate base which may be fixed shall be limited to a maximum of 12 percent per annum.
He proposes that the emergency powers be in effect for one year only. #