Chaos gripped the city of Davao as an explosion rocked the city night market in Roxas Ave. According to a statement released by the City of Davao, the explosion came from a SPA operating nearby. The night market is a popular venue specially during weekends for residents and students from the nearby Ateneo Campus. Ten people where immediately killed by the blast with scores injured and wounded.
Emergency response units were immediately on the scene to assist the injured and rush them to several hospitals across the city.
Authorities are still determining the blast cause and actual source as some witnesses indicated that a second blast was also heard after the first one. Speculation is rife that the blast was a terrorist retaliation for the hightened war against drugs or resulting from President Duterte’s all out war order against the Abu Sayaff.
Security measures have been set in place as the President declared a state of lawlessness nationwide where the Armed Forces and the Police have been tasked to increase visibility and conduct checkpoints all across the nation.
The President in an interview with media dispelled reports that he is declaring martial law. He clarified that it is just a state of emergency where he will be able to “run the country according to his style”. Some opposition lawmakers have stated that some elements would want Martial Law to be implemented in the country and this event is just a pretext to such a situation.
On the other hand, the President assured the nation that Davao is safe and the investigation is ongoing as to the cause of the blast. In the meantime, Davao has been put on the highest alert levels ever since Duterte came to power.
This breaking news is by NEWSMEPH and has been verified.
Sept. 1, 2016, MANILA – The Philippine Catholic Church, specifically Balanga Bataan Bishop Ruperto Santos has opposed the opening of the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant. In a statement he said: ” The BNPP damages life, livelihood and nature. The BNPP is not the answer to the present needs of the people. No one is safe from the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant.”
The church has stiffened its position stating that reviving the BNPP puts the public at risk, most specially the residents of nearby provinces.
Government however has seen potential in the powerplant alleviating the rising cost of electricity. Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi says that opening the BNPP will provide additional 620 MW of electricity which will stabilize the whole grid in the long term.
“It is safe to use! It is an unpopular option but it is a cheap and long lasting option that will be good for our country” said Cusi during a hearing conducted by the Senate.
The Philippines has been lagging behind its neighbors in electric power generation, making it one of the countries in Asia with the highest electricity cost per kilowatt hour. This high cost in power has been a factor why the Philippines has been sidelined by foreign investors who have opted to go to China, Vietnam and even Indonesia.
Other sources of power are depletable according to Cusi who identified Malampaya as a source that will be depleted by 2024. He said that it is the role of government to look for alternative sources that will lower electricity cost. The Church has countered that alternatives can be found in renewable energy sources like the wind and the sun.
The benefits of opening the BNPP will be lower electricity rates for the consumer both private and business sectors; a stable supply for the whole grid and more investors coming to the Philippines which in turn creates more jobs.
Extensive studies are now being conducted on the BNPP and its viability and will be submitted to President Rodrigo Duterte for his approval. The government has been paying 27 Million pesos for the maintenance and upkeep of the mothballed plant.