Poe seeks probe, long-term solutions to Panay Island brownouts

Senator Grace Poe has sought a Senate investigation into the power interruption plaguing Panay Island for years to identify measures that would ensure continuous supply to consumers.

In filing Senate Resolution 579, Poe said it is time to put in place a long-term solution to the power woes which have been severely impacting on the daily lives of residents and economic activities in the region.

"Recurring power interruptions and massive blackouts should not be a way of life for our people in Panay Island," she said.

Poe is the chairperson of the Senate Committee on Public Services.

"Concerned agencies must get a handle on the problem to end the intolerable suffering of the residents," she pointed out.

Poe stressed the need to determine the root cause of the grid disturbances reported by the  National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) allegedly due to the tripping of distribution utilities (DUs).

At the same time, the inquiry should delve into the position of electric cooperatives in Panay and Negros pointing to the NGCP as the cause of the problem, Poe said.

An electric cooperative cited a voltage fluctuation and frequency imbalance in a line under the management of the NGCP.

"There is an urgent need to determine the root of these grid disturbances, implement remedial measures and determine who shall be held liable to finally put an end to the blame-shifting between NGCP and the DUs, and ascertain possible franchise violations,"  she pointed out.

"There is also a need to look into the long-term solutions to the power interruptions and outages within the backdrop of the 'thin' supply of power in the Visayas grid," she added.