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News Briefs

04:17 AM September 03, 2018

Deadline for registration of political parties extended

The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has extended the deadline for the filing of petitions for registration of political parties for the May 2019 polls. Based on Comelec Resolution No. 10415, the deadline for the filing has been moved to Sept. 15. “The Comelec resolves to extend the filing of petitions for registration of coalition of political parties for the purposes of the May 2019 national and local elections from Aug. 31 to Sept. 15,” the Comelec en banc said in the resolution promulgated on Aug. 29. Petitions for registration may be submitted before the clerk of the commission after payment of a fee of P10,100. —TINA G. SANTOS


House bill supporting corn industry pushed

Amid the rising price of rice, Deputy House Speaker Sharon Garin on Sunday pushed for a bill that would create an agency to support the local corn industry and promote health and economic benefits of corn. Garin, of the Aambis-Owa party-list group, said House Bill No. 6278, or the proposed Corn Industry Development Act, which she authored, had remained pending the committee on agriculture since August last year. The bill aims to provide capacity development, financial and infrastructure support to corn farmers. It echoes the Department of Agriculture’s call to look beyond corn as feeds and tap its other uses, especially the white corn variant. —JEROME ANING


Senate set to approve universal health care bill

Sen. Joseph Victor Ejercito on Sunday assured that the Senate was expected to approve its version of the universal health
care bill by October following President Duterte’s appeal to Congress. “It’s a great honor to craft this landmark bill along with our fellow servants in government in the name of each Filipino, who deserve to receive efficient, sufficient, accessible, and affordable health care from the government,” Ejercito, the chair of the Senate committee on health and demography, said in a statement. This means that all Filipinos will soon be covered by free health insurance and enjoy better facilities in government-run hospitals. The bill is projected to translate in P7,000 in savings in medical expenses for each Filipino a year, depending on the illness. —JULIE M. AURELIO

Use of Malampaya Fund to cut power cost urged

Sen. Sherwin Gatchalian pushed anew for the passage of Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto’s measure that would allow the use of the government’s earnings from the Malampaya natural gas project to help reduce the electricity costs of consumers. In a statement on Sunday, Gatchalian, the chair of the Senate committee on energy, expressed his support for Recto’s Senate Bill No. 1950, or the “Murang Kuryente Act.” The bill aims to allocate funds from the Malampaya Fund to pay off stranded contract costs and stranded debt incurred by the National Power Corp. Gatchalian stressed that by utilizing the said fund, this would result in consumer savings for Filipino households in their monthly electricity bill. “If passed into law, this bill would lower electricity rates and provide significant consumer savings for Filipinos,” he said in his statement. He noted that the P207- billion Malampaya Fund has been mostly untapped since 2001.—JULIE M. AURELIO

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TAGS: corn industry, Malampaya fund, News, Philippines, Political Parties, universal health care bill
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