Palace belies plans to lift EO 839 partially

November 6, 2009 9:33 am 

MANILA, Nov. 6 —Malacanang denied on Friday that the government is considering the partial lifting of the Executive Order 839.

Press Secretary Cerge Remonde said in a media briefing at the New Executive Building in Malacanang, that there was no truth that Justice Secretary Agnes Devandera, who is one of the member of the created task force by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to monitor the implementation of EO 839, planned to recommend the partial lifting of the oil price freeze order to the President by next week.

Remonde said Devanadera assured him that she was not planning to recommend the partial lifting of the order to the chief executive.

He also said that Devanadera even told him that the task force, composed of the Department of Justice (DOJ) and Department of Energy (DOE), continued to monitor the supply of oil products and the implementation of EO 839.

Devanadera even told Remonde that the task force also continued to talk with the oil sector.

A dialogue between the task force and the oil sector was also set on Monday to discuss issues regarding the implementation of EO 839.

Meanwhile, Remonde also asked the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to verify and investigate the report that the price of Liquified Petroleum Gas (LPG) will increase by P3.50 per kilo gram in Visayas and Mindanao.

”DTI has jurisdiction over this issue to immediately look into this report and if this reports are true, whether these are justified or if not justified, it is for the DTI to exercise their power within the law to protect the interest and the right of the consumers,” Remonde said.

He said that the task force would also look into reports that some gasoline stations in Metro Manila experienced shortage of supply.

”The DOJ and the DOE will have to find out the reason why these gasoline stations are now out of supply. The task force will look into it,” Remonde also said.

Earlier, Remonde told the oil companies not to resort to blackmailing the government by making announcements that once the Executive Order 839 is lifted, there would be series of oil price increases.

He also said that the statement of oil companies that there would be a P5-increase in pump prices on oil products once President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo lifts her oil price freeze order under EO 839 would not help the country.

”We appeal to oil companies to stop making grim warnings and dire projections. In the meantime, we continue to appeal to the oil companies and their executives to stop raving and ranting because they are not helping the situation and definitely they cannot blackmail this government,” Remonde added.

Remonde insisted that Malacanang also understands that the oil companies like other companies are after big profits.

The Malacanang official is also optimistic that these oil giant companies will not experience losses because of the oil price cap. PNA)

RMA/rudyma

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