Estrada calls Reyes ‘incompetent’
By Roel Pareño
The Philippine Star
ZAMBOANGA CITY , Philippines – Former President Joseph Estrada branded yesterday former Energy secretary Angelo Reyes as “incompetent” for his failure to resolve the power crisis in Mindanao.
“This administration is so blind,” he said.
“They have been there for nine years and they did not anticipate a power crisis will come. They have appointed people in the Department of Energy that are incompetent to address the problem.”
During his campaign sortie, Estrada experienced power outage in Zamboanga City.
Ilocos Norte Rep. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., whose province is powered by windmills, agreed that there is no quick fix solution to the power crisis hitting Mindanao and the rest of the country.
Speaking to reporters in Dipolog City, Marcos, a Nacionalista Party senatorial candidate, said the power crisis is a problem caused by the national government since it was already forecast seven years ago.
“I cannot see how suddenly we can find solution even using emergency powers,” he said.
“The only immediate solution is for it to rain and of course nobody can make it rain.”
Major cities nationwide have been experiencing rotating blackouts of up to 12 hours a day and businesses have been complaining of losing millions from the power crisis.
Marcos said more power stations, which he estimated to take three to five years to build, should be put up to resolve the power crisis in Mindanao.
“We cannot say the problem will be fixed tomorrow,” he said.
Marcos said recent government decisions were not based on technical or scientific data but on politics, like the recommendation of the Department of Energy for President Arroyo to use her emergency powers to address the power crisis.
“When technical and scientific questions are answered by politics, it is always wrong,” he said.
The Electric Power Industry Reform Act (EPIRA) has many loopholes that need to be overhauled to suit the country’s needs, Marcos said.