Monday, April 21, 2008

Anakbayan slams Arroyo for ignoring bids for immediate econ relief amid soaring prices

April 18, 2008

Eleanor de Guzman
Chairperson, 09282555423

Sarah Katrina Maramag
Vice-chairperson/Media Officer, 09193486790

Anakbayan slams Arroyo for ignoring bids for immediate econ relief amid soaring prices

Youth group Anakbayan today criticized President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo for ignoring proposals by officials, solons and sectors to implement immediate economic relief amid soaring price hikes and food shortages.

Anakbayan national chairperson Eleanor de Guzman said that so far Mrs. Arroyo has rejected proposals of a rice price control, a legislated wage increase and VAT suspension on food and petroleum products.

"These are concrete proposals aimed to cushion the crippling blows of continuously rising prices. Without even so much as batting an eyelash Arroyo has rejected them without offering acceptable pro-people and pro-consumer alternatives," de Guzman said.

De Guzman slammed Malacanang's line that price regulation would directly cause rice supplies to dwindle.

"Price control entails direct government intervention for food security. This means prioritizing subsidies to increase rice production for local consumption, and not by importing high-cost imported rice that we could barely afford," de Guzman said.

De Guzman echoed some solons' statements that the government would be able to save more if it would focus on increasing rice production for local consumption instead of continuously being dependent on rice importation.

"The bottom line still would be Arroyo's political will and genuine interest to provide immediate economic relief to consumers. Otherwise, walang pagkain sa mesa kundi mag-aalsa ang masa (There would be no food on the table if the masses will not rise up in protest)," de Guzman said. ###

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