Lawmaker: Eastern Visayas congressmen working together for region’s interest

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Thursday, September 30, 2010

TACLOBAN CITY -- Issues affecting the Eastern Visayas region are being addressed by all the congressmen in the region, said Leyte Representative Lucy Torres-Gomez who particularly mentioned the problem on power as an example wherein all congressmen from the region are working together.

“It’s really good that all of us, especially the Liberal Party bloc, are working together for the (interest of the region),” she said.

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With the exception of Rep. Ferdinand Martin Romualdez (Leyte) and Rep. Emil Ong (Northern Samar), all congressmen from the region are members of the administration-backed Liberal Party.

The region also has two party-list representatives, Florencio “Bem” Noel and Neil Benedict Montejo of the An Waray party-list group.

For years now, the region has been engulfed on power problem, which include a high power cost, despite of the fact that the biggest geothermal fields are located in the region.

It said the power cost in the region is among the highest in the entire Asia ranging from P7 per kilowatt hour (kwh) to P10 per kwh.

Torres-Gomez, who is a neophyte lawmaker representing Leyte’s fourth congressional district, was among those who filed a resolution at the House of Representatives, calling for the deferment of the privatization of some power plants at the Tongonan geothermal.

Regional leaders have been calling the national leadership to take a closer look on the energy situation in the region by giving it a preferential rate considering it is the host region of the geothermal fields, a source of power.

They argued that the high cost of power is one of the reasons why Eastern Visayas is not attracting investors.

The Leyte lawmaker, however, admitted that while all the congressmen from the region are all in one against the issue on power, it would take more than just being united.

“Congressmen are working together in addressing the problem but it’s really a long, complicated process,” Torres-Gomez said. (Leyte Samar Daily Express)

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