Pangilinan Hits Oil Price Hike

October 20, 2010

Mario B. casayuran
Manila Bulletin
October 20, 2010

MANILA, Philippines — Sen. Francis N. Pangilinan took to task on Wednesday oil companies for raising their prices despite the extensive damage wrought by typhoon “Juan’’ in northern and central Luzon.

‘’That is insensitive and uncalled for — it’s like rubbing salt to our wounds,” said Pangilinan, chairman of the Senate agriculture and social justice committees.

“Hindi pa nga nakakaalis ang bagyong Juan sa bansa at lugmok na lugmok pa ang ating mga kababayan dahil sa pinsalang dulot nito, naiisip pa nitong mga kumpanyang ito na magtaas ng presyo? Maawa naman sila sa taumbayan,’’ he said. (These oil companies had the temerity to increase their prices  when the populace is down. They did it when the typhoon has not yet exited from the country’s land mass.) “I don’t see why they need to raise their prices now. Can’t they suspend their price increases?’’ Pangilinan asked.

“Now’s the time when we all need to work together to rebuild after the world’s worst storm of the year. To even consider raising prices now is bordering on criminal already,’’ he pointed out.

Pangilinan said it is time for the Senate to look into the possibility of crafting legislation that bars price hikes during times of calamity to prevent corporate abuse especially when consumers are at their most vulnerable.

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