Thursday, September 27, 2007

A Thousand Barangays Do Not Have Electricity

I watched again, for about half an hour, the NBN hearing at the Senate, via ANC today. Only Joker made sense. I am partial to Roxas, but not soo good.

The male Senator Cayetano, opened his mouth to say: "a thousand villages in the country do not have electricity". What he meant, if I am interpreting it right:

"Why are we putting up broadband when 1000 villages do not have electricity."

My take on this are as follows:

1. $^%&^*)*%$#, those two things maybe related, but is totally not the issue in the inquiry. Ang koryente, ay koryente. Ang broadband ay broadband.

2. I travelled around the Philippines for a few years. When I say, I travelled; I really travelled, as in been there, live there for few days. I can easily give him specific places i.e. a hundred villages that have no electricity. I, and the people living there understand why their is no electricity connected to the grid, and most if not all of them have no complaints. What are these places, aber?

a. Hehehehe. OK, an example is Patnanungan island (a Municipality) with several Barangays, the place is located east of Quezon, behind the Polilio island, it is more than half day travel by sea. And on to it are the islands of nowhere, I forgot the name.

b. Another are the islands in the North of Bohol composed of Mahanay, Calituban, Jandayan, Nasingin, Pandanon, Cataban, Guindacpan, and several dozens more up to the Mucipality of CP Garcia. Each island is a Barangay or two, several miles apart.

c. Another is Barangay Emandiwing, wherever that is, on top of the mountains in Burauen Leyte.

But many of the houses in these islands have electricity, one way or the other, some have TVs. They use generators (you can now get a generator for around 10K), car batteries (1K, used lights are 12 volts), and some have solar power. Connecting them to the grid is not practical cost wise. I am sure these Barangays and are included in the 1000 list he claimed to have no electricity. But this is beside the point. Ang koryente ay koryente, ang broadband ay broadband.

I agree with Joker Arroyo when he said: do we need it? If not, scrap it. If we need it, what is the best deal? BOT? a China Loan?

OK, whatever.