ERC abolition: Energy groups vote ‘No’, consumer group votes ‘Yes’

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QUEZON CITY, Philippines – Some energy distribution agencies are not in favor of the proposed abolition of the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC).

These include the National Power Corporation (NPC), the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP), and the National Electrification Administration (NEA).

Instead of abolition, the group said they are more inclined to streamline the agency by reviewing its mandate in order to become more effective.

NEA Deputy Administrator Rossan Rosaro-Lee said they would “go for the independence of ERC while NPC Representative Margarita Egnisaban suggested, “to strengthen ERC.”

However, “Laban Konsyumer Incorporated” President Victor Dimagiba said ERC should be abolished saying the agency has always been unfair to consumers.

“If you want consumers to understand what Congress wanted to do, we should stick with the version of the Speaker ‘s resolution to abolish ERC,” said Dimagiba.

ERC Chairperson Agnes Devanadera, meanwhile, said they are willing to obey Congress’ decision the issue.

With the number of oppositions, the technical working group has decided to follow House Bill 7104 as the working draft. The bill proposes strengthening of the ERC under a new name Philippine Power Regulatory Commission.

Meanwhile, House Committee on Government Reorganization Chairman Mark Sambar is still not discounting the proposal of House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez to abolish ERC. Alvarez suggested so saying it is the only way to stop corruption in the said agency. – Grace Casin / Marje Pelayo

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