Palace sees passage of extra powers bill

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MalacaÑang on Thursday expressed confidence that a joint resolution granting President Benigno Aquino 3rd emergency powers will be passed by Congress this year.

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“I understand that the timeline was given, and my understanding as well is that the timeline is necessary to lay out the timeline for procurement,” Palace deputy spokesperson Abigail Valte said in a news conference.

Valte added that the passage of the joint resolution would not be swift but noted that majority of the lawmakers are for it.

“We can confidently go to Congress and say that we did our due diligence for this particular issue,” she said.

In his letter addressed to Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. and Senate President Franklin Drilon dated September 12, President Benigno Aquino 3rd asked Congress to grant him emergency powers in light of expected power outages during the summer season.

Aquino said the Department of Energy expects a “critical electricity situation” next year because of the El Niño phenomenon, Malampaya turnaround, power outages and delays in the commissioning of committed power projects.

“The speedy enactment of the joint resolution will ensure the energy requirements of the country for this critical period, through a specific, focused and targeted acquisition of additional generating capacities for use during the limited periods of time of very tight energy supply,” he added.

Aquino in the letter said emergency powers were “needed in order to address the imminent shortage of electric power for the summer of 2015 in Luzon.”

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