MANILA (Mabuhay) – Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago is in favor of granting President Benigno Aquino III emergency powers to address the expected power crisis next year.
“He has already made the decision that the generative capacity of our country will not be sufficient,” Santiago told a press conference Wednesday. “We have to give him the presumption of good faith.”
Santiago, a veteran lawmaker, said granting emergency powers to a sitting president amid a looming power crisis is authorized by the Constitution and the Electric Power Industry Reform Act.
“We have to prevent blackout in any event,” she said.
Last week, Aquino sent a letter to the two houses of Congress asking for emergency powers. In particular, he asked Congress to pass a joint resolution that will provide him with emergency powers to provide additional generating capacity for the Luzon grid.
Santiago noted the emergency powers should only last for a maximum of six months.
“One-year emergency powers is too much. Do they know the meaning of emergency? They should look at the meaning in the dictionary,” she said, referring to the statement by Energy Secretary Jericho Petilla that they would ask Congress to provide emergency powers to Aquino for a year.
Santiago also said Congress should grant the emergency powers as early as possible.
“Ibibigay mo na rin lang, ibigay mo na agad,” she said. (MNS)