The Freedom from Debt Coalition held its culminating activity today to cap its weeklong National On-the-Spot Poster-Making Contest, “Ang PPA, Mataas na Kuryente, at ang Epekto nito sa Buhay ng Kababaihan, Maralita, at Manggagawa.” Prizes were awarded to winners in the national competition: first prize – Lynyrd Arwyn Paras (Metro Manila), second prize – Xerxis Beryl Serafin (Western Mindanao), and third prize – Rodel Sismundo (Metro Manila).

The poster-making contest was opened to labor, youth, and urban poor sectors in Cebu, Iloilo, Leyte, Davao, Western Mindanao, General Santos City, and Metro Manila.

Entries portrayed how the public suffers from oppressive electricity rates.

The contest was held as an alternative medium in letting the people visualize the effects of continuing rate increases to the daily lives of the people. “The posters speak for themselves: the consuming public is already tired with the ever-increasing electricity rates,” says FDC President Ana Maria R. Nemenzo.

While consumers are already suffering from high electricity rates, Nemenzo added that the new round of rates increase granted to Meralco will result to further oppression of poor consumers. “On top of high electricity rates, consumers will have to bear the burden of another increase when Meralco implements its provisional increase in January 2004,” Nemenzo stressed.

The FDC President says that consumers will not take the burden any longer. “There will be other mass actions against high electricity rates. The poster-making contest is one way that consumers can use to make their demands known to the government. It is an alternative way of saying ABOLISH PPA/GRAM*! STOP RATES INCREASE!” she exclaimed.

The National On-the-Spot Poster-Making Contest is one of the activities that FDC has lined up for the campaign against high electricity rates and the reforms in the power industry.

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