Gatchalian worries over possible brownout during elections due to low power supply reserves

Aileen Cerrudo   •   April 12, 2019   •   1194

Senate energy committee chairman Senator Sherwin T. Gatchalian

Senate energy committee chairman Senator Sherwin T. Gatchalian, raised concerns over the possibility of a brownout during elections.

This is due to the low power supply reserve in the Luzon grid.

“Normally kapag nagka-outage, isang planta lang, dalawang planta, tatlong planta, but if you’re talking about 1,400 megawatts (MW) at maraming planta ito then tumataas ang possibility na magkaroon tayo ng brownout sa eleksyon, (Normally during outage, it is only one to three [power] plants, but if you’re talking about 1,400 (MW) with several power plants then there is a high possibility there will be brownout during elections)” he said.

Gatchalian also said the Department of Energy (DOE) should investigate the spate of maintenance shutdown in order to make sure that there will be no power interruptions during election day.

“The DOE should remain vigilant for possible collusion due to thin electricity reserves in the midst of high demand,” he said.

The energy department is already meeting with the management of the power plants that had shut down.

From March to April, four power plants already shut down with a total of 1,352 MW loss in Luzon.—Aileen Cerrudo (with reports from Nel Maribojoc)

AFP, PNP suspends ops vs CPP-NPA as Pres. Duterte declares ceasefire

Maris Federez   •   December 23, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) have suspended their offensive operations against the Communist Party of the Philippines-New Peoples Army (CPP-NPA).

This, after President Rodrigo Roa Duterte signed the ceasefire agreement between the national government and the communist group for the holiday season.

Read: PH gov’t, Reds declare holiday truce; eye resumption of peace talks

Department of National Defense Sec. Delfin Lorenzana said the military will immediately implement the Suspension of Military Operations (SOMO) in accordance with the order of the commander-in-chief despite the red alert status that the AFP has raised in line with the communist group’s celebration of its 51st anniversary on December 26.

Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Sec. Eduardo M. Año, on the part of the police, said: “it is the prerogative of the President, as commander-in-chief, to declare a unilateral ceasefire for the Christmas season and we abide by his decision.”

Año has also directed the Philippine National Police (PNP) to comply and to issue appropriate orders to all units in the field.

“While we remain vigilant and take a strong defensive stance, this will also give an opportunity for our policemen and soldiers in the field to spend a meaningful celebration of Christmas with their families,” the DILG chief said.

On Sunday (Dec. 22) PNP officer-in-charge PLtGen. Archie Francisco Gamboa issued a memorandum on the agency’s implementation of Suspension of Police Operations (SOPO) amid their full alert status.

PNP Spokesman Police B/Gen. Bernard Banac said that with this directive, the PNP will not conduct offensive activities from December 23 to January 7.

Año hopes that the rebel group will make use of the ceasefire as an opportunity “for them to surrender, avail of the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Community Integration Program (ECLIP), rejoin mainstream society, and start a new life together with their families”. — (with details from Lea Ylagan) /mbmf

Comelec expects influx of registrants amid last-day of voter registration

Aileen Cerrudo   •   September 30, 2019

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) is expecting an influx of ‘last-minute’ registrants at the voter registration for the 2020 Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections.

Comelec will officially close the voter registration at 5:00 p.m. on Monday (September 30). Comelec Spokesperson Dir. James Jimenez said their office is prepared to handle the number of registrants.

“An influx of registrants is to be expected. The COMELEC has anticipated this, and we are confident that our employees in the field are prepared to handle the last-day registration scenario,” he said.

Based on Comelec Resolution 10549, Comelec will implement the following protocol for the last day of voter registration.

  • If there are still applicants lined up to register within the thirty (30) meter radius from the Office of the Election Officer (OEO) by 3:00 P.M. of September 30, 2019, their names will be promptly and consecutively listed down.
  • Each name will be announced repeatedly three (3) times in the order in which the applicants’ names were listed. Applicants who are not present when their names are called shall no longer be allowed to file their application.
  • When an applicant’s name is called and he/she is present, his/her application will be processed and his/her biometrics data will be captured. The process continues until all those listed shall have been processed.
  • An Express Lane is provided for Persons with Disabilities, Senior Citizens and Heavily Pregnant Applicants.

There are around 2.6 million registered voters in the country as of August 1 this year, according to Comelec’s data.—AAC

ERC: SC decision might result in the cessation of power supply

Aileen Cerrudo   •   August 12, 2019

Courtesy : Pixabay

The Supreme Court’s decision to deny the Energy Regulatory Commission’s (ERC) motion for reconsideration might result in the cessation of power supply.

The ERC has filed a motion for reconsideration of SC’s ruling to void over 90 power supply agreements (PSA) that did not undergo bidding.

“The High Court’s decision will result to the possible immediate termination of 99 affected PSA contracts which will result in the cessation of power supply to 52 Distribution Utilities (DUs) that are serving 13 million electricity consumers,” according to their statement.

There might also be a possible surge in power bills due to the said decision, the ERC added.

However, the ERC also said they will comply with the directive of the Supreme Court.

“We only need to seek guidance through a motion for clarification on how to implement their decision particularly on the rates and the continued supply of electricity to the affected public utilities,” according to ERC chairperson and CEO, Agnes VST Devanadera.—AAC  

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