PNoy vows to energize sitios before end of term in 2016
ISABEL, Leyte- President Aquino vowed to energize all the sitios in the country still without power connections before the end of his term in 2016.
Mr. Aquino made this promise as he led yesterday the ceremonial switching ceremony of his administration’s sitios energization program (SEP) in Eastern Visayas held on Wednesday at this town’s gymnasium.
The President said that since the program was started last year, more than 2,300 sitios have so far been energized with an additional 4,487 more before the end of the year.
His administration aims to provide power connection to the country’s more than 33,000 sitios.
About P33 billion has been allocated by the Aquino administration for the project.
In the region, out of the 2,140 sitios targeted for the program, 192 have been so far energized befitting more than 5,700 households.
For this year, 268 sitios are targeted under the program.
In his speech, the President made a dig to his predecessor, former President and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.
The President said that the previous administration has boasted that it was able to energize 99.98 percent of the country’s barangays which he claimed could be “good news.”
“Ang problema po, iba pala ang totoong situwasyon. Dahil pagnakabitan na ng kable mula sa grid papuntang barangay hall, may kuryente na raw ang buong barangay,” he said.
“Kaylan pa naging katumbas ang barangay hall ang isang buong barangay. Kung ganito ang kanilang batayan sa pagpapailaw, malamang po kahit pumuti na ang uwak patuloy na mangangapa sa dilim ang marami sa ating mga kababayan,” he said.
With this kind of performance, it’s almost back to zero for him to energize the country;s remaining vbillages which have yet to have connections.
The President said that for each barangay to have a power connection, the government need to allocate P1 million.
“Masaklap isang milyon peso ang kanilang gasto para makuryentehan ang isang sitio. Ang iniwan sa atin, halos 36,000 na mga sitios na walang kuryente. Ano po ang gagastusin, tumataginting na P36 billion,” he said.
“Talaga naman pong nakakapandilim ng paningin, di po ba,” the President said.
He said with the effort of the Department of Energy and the National Electrification administration, this problem is now being addressed.
And since it was launced last year, more than 2,300 sitios in the country have been energized and an additional 4,487 more before the end of the year. The President was joined by Secretaries Rene Almedras of the Department of Energy; Trade Sec. Gregorio Domingo, Press Sec. Edwin Lacierda, Senator Teofisto Guingona III and Administrator Edita Bueno of the National Electrification Administration during the occasion.
He was welcomed by Leyte Governor Jericho Petilla, Rep. Lucy Torres Gomez and Mayor Saturnino Medina of this town and the president of the electric cooperatives association in the region, Emmanuel Sano.
In attendance were officials of the 11 electric cooperatives of the region.
The President arrived at the Daniel Z. Romualdez Airport in Tacloban at around 9 a.m. and departed to this industrialized town at around 10:15.
Isabel, more than 150 kms away from the regional capital of Tacloban, has been chosen as the regional site of the launching of the SEP as it has more than sitios that need to be energized compared to the remaining 10 electric cooperatives.
Joselito Jorda, general manager of the Leyte V Electric Cooperative (Leyeco V), said that 162 sitios from its 12 coverage areas have been so far identified for the program.
Jorda said that the sitios that would be given priority are those with 30 households.
“And they must be really indigents,” he said.
Leyeco V covers the city of Ormoc and the towns of Albuera, Merida, Palompon, San Isidro, Leyte-Leyte; Kananga; Matag-ob; Villaba, Tabango, Calubian and this town of Isabel.
By Joey A. Gabieta,Staff Writer
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