Solons seek probe on massive Western Visayas blackout

ILOILO CITY – The House Committee on Energy has been urged to probe the massive power blackout that hit Western Visayas last week.

Four congressmen from Western Visayas filed House Resolution No. 993 seeking the investigation.

In House Resolution No. 993, the committee was asked “to immediately conduct an inquiry, in aid of legislation, on the region-wide unscheduled and intermittent blackout in Western Visayas.”

The resolution was filed on Tuesday, May 2, by Iloilo Reps. Michael “Mike” Gorriceta and Lorenz “Noy” Defensor of Iloilo, Negros Occidental Rep. Jose Francisco Benitez, and Uswag Ilonggo party-list Rep. James “Jojo” Ang.

A system disturbance in the grid of the privately owned National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP) caused long power blackouts in Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Guimaras, Iloilo, and Negros Occidental as well as the highly urbanized cities of Iloilo and Bacolod from April 27 to 30.

“The power outages caused serious disturbance to the Ilonggo people who are essentially being robbed of their constitutional right to quality life, not to mention the negative impacts such incidents have to the economy and the resulting damage to properties,” the lawmakers said.

The resolution noted that the public statements made by the NGCP caused confusion due to unclear explanations.

People also wrongly blamed their local distribution utilities, which had to repeatedly explain that the problem was not In their facilities.