The Aquino legacy: No power to the people

No Power to the People - Spatial Ensaymada

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President Noynoy Aquino seems to be following the footsteps of his mother Corazon, whose presidency was famous for its power outages. Simply put, Aquino proposes a double whammy: pay higher power rates, and use coal-fired plants. Both steps are geared towards the depletion of resources, the former economic, the latter environmental. “This is the reality of economics,” Aquino says, “not the rhetoric of politics.” However, the root of the situation is the flawed Electric Power Industry Reform Act of 2001 (Epira), which deregulated the Philippine power industry in favor of private corporations. More than a decade after its enactment, consumers now pay around twice the price for electricity–the highest in Asia–and Aquino appears closed to the idea of even revising Epira. Clearly, there are interests being protected here, and it is definitely not the public’s.

 

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