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Comelec, energy sector mapping out blackout-free polls

MANILA, Philippines – The Commission on Elections (Comelec) is coordinating with the energy sector to ensure a reliable power supply during the May midterm elections, a Comelec official said Friday.

Comelec Director Teopisto Elnas, Jr., deputy project director for the May 13 elections, said they are arranging another meeting with representatives from the power sector after the National Grid Corp. of the Philippines (NGCP) placed the Luzon grid under yellow and red alerts after a magnitude 6.1 earthquake damaged several power generators.

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READ: Luzon grid under power supply alert due to quake damage

“We are in coordination with the power sector. In fact nakadalawang meeting na tayo and we’re looking at conducting another meeting considering itong nangyaring development sa Pampanga, Zambales area and itong nabablitang ngayong nagre-red, nagye-yellow (alerts),” Elnas said in a press briefing.

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“We are planning to conduct a final meeting with the energy sector just to make sure and ensure that by election time meron tayong 100 percent power supply,” he added.

The Comelec official also allayed fears of possible power outages after election day which may disrupt the transmission of the results.

READ: Possible power outages feared during canvassing of votes

Elnas claimed that the energy sector has already made a commitment to ensure power supply until the computation or tabulation period.

He also said that they have asked local Comelec officials in earthquake-affected areas to inspect and evaluate polling places, canvassing centers and transmission facilities.

As of Friday, installation of transmission facilities is currently at 63 percent, Elnas said.

“Nasa mga 63 percent na ‘yung installation natin ng transmission facilities doon sa municipal, city and provincial board of canvassing centers. Ininstall na ‘yung mga transmission facilities so pinapacheck natin baka nadisorient or nasira so that they still have time to remedy the situation,” he said. /gsg

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