House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano on Wednesday welcomed the reduction of electricity rates by the Manila Electric Company (Meralco) this August, expressing gratitude to the company for heeding the call of the House of Representatives to find ways to cushion high electricity rates.
“Many of our kababayans — whether poor or middle class — currently have no means of livelihood due the COVID-19 pandemic. That’s why we’re grateful to Meralco for heeding the House’s call to do something more to help lessen the daily burden of our kababayans,” he said in a statement.
From P8.6966 per kilowatt-hour (kWh) due in July, the electricity bills of Meralco consumers will see a P0.2055 per kWh decrease in August. As a result, consumers can save from P41 to P103 depending on their kwh consumption.
The Speaker earlier appealed to Meralco Chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan and Senior Vice President William Pamintuan to look into the possibility of giving a 50 percent discount to “at least the sectors that need it most” or delaying the payment of electricity bills.
While acknowledging that the goal of all businesses is to thrive financially, Cayetano requested Meralco, which he said has “had its share of profitability” as it has been serving Greater Manila, to continue exploring options to ease its payment collection.
“I know you’re already doing things for that group, ‘yung (the) lifeline [discount], ‘no, but pakitingnan lang, Sir, kung meron pa tayong maaambag (please see if you can contribute more)… I’m sure President Duterte will also very much appreciate it,” the Taguig lawmaker said in his manifestation during one of the hearings conducted by the House committee on good government.
“Lifeline discount” is a discount given by Meralco to low-income consumers using less than 100 kilowatt-hours a month.
Cayetano said the congressional inquiries helped bring the issues and complaints raised by ordinary consumers to the concerned institutions.
“Pag-aralan natin lagi ang mga polisiya ng gobyerno. Siguraduhin nating maitama ‘yung mga mali, ‘yung panig sa Pilipino,” he said.