Philippine minister to resign over broken power promise

Philippine minister to resign over broken power promise

MANILA - The Philippines' energy minister intends to resign after failing to keep a promise to restore electricity to all typhoon-ravaged areas by Christmas Eve, a presidential spokesman said Wednesday.

Energy Secretary Jericho Petilla plans to file his resignation on Thursday, President Benigno Aquino's spokesman Edwin Lacierda said on ABS-CBN television.

"He intends to submit his resignation, perhaps by tomorrow. Whether the president will accept his resignation, let us wait for that conversation to take place," said Lacierda after speaking to the energy chief.

Petilla had earlier promised to restore electricity to all towns hit by Super Typhoon Haiyan by Christmas Eve but had failed to reconnect the supply to three towns, the spokesman said.

Lacierda said Petilla had done an "admirable job" considering the scale of the disaster.

The typhoon, one of the strongest ever to hit land, flattened whole towns and left over 6,100 dead and almost 2,000 missing when it struck the central Philippines on November 8.

While power has been restored in a few selected areas of the affected towns, many districts still have no electricity after the storm tore down power lines across a wide area.

The government disaster monitoring agency reported that there were still power outages reported throughout the provinces hit by the typhoon, one of the worst natural disasters to strike the country.

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