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Masbate Rep. Tonton Kho seeks higher budget for NEA

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Masbate Rep. Tonton Kho has urged his fellow lawmakers to increase the budget of the National Electrification Administratiom (NEA) to support the agency’s programs.

Kho made series of clarifications during the budget deliberation of the Department of Energy, to which the NEA is an attached agency.

“NEA is one of the government agencies tasked to implement the “Total Electrification Program” of the National Government. The said program aims to energize all of the unserved households all throughout the nation,” said Kho.

“During my interpellation, I pointed out the patent insufficiency in the current budget of the National Electrification Administration. From the proposed budget amounting to 6.146 billion pesos, the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) only approved 1.5 billion pesos and only about 1.162 billion was allocated to Sitio Electrification Program (SEP),”he added.

Kho likewise observed that in the National Expenditure program for the year 2020, the budget of the NEA did not include the Barangay Line Electrification Program which used to be one of the flagship programs of NEA..

“In this light, this representation endeavored to inquire about the rationale behind the Sitio Electrification Program(SEP) since there are several barangays all throughout the country that are still deprived of electricity,” he said.

“To be precise, I invited the attention of my colleagues to the current predicament of our constituents in Masbate. At this juncture, I labored to elucidate the existing energy status of our barangays in Masbate. Succinctly put, out of 225 barangays in Masbate, 53 barangays still remains underserved. And out of these 53 barangays only 41 are under PAMATEC, which translates to 12 barangays still languishing in darkness.”

Kho said that he urged the House leadership to include these unpowered barangays in the electrification program of NEA for the year 2020.

“By and large, this representation strove to champion the budget of the NEA by urging my fellow congressmen to support the increase in the budget of the National Electrification Administration which would ultimately redound to the benefit of the people of Masbate,” he said.