SC slaps new TRO on Meralco power rate hike

Posted at 04/22/2014 1:49 PM | Updated as of 04/22/2014 8:44 PM

MANILA (2nd UPDATE/CORRECTED) – The Supreme Court on Tuesday issued a new temporary restraining order (TRO) against the imposition of the P4.15 per kilowatt hour increase in electricity charges of Manila Electric Company (Meralco).

Supreme Court spokesman Theodore Te said the justices voted 10-4 on the decision.

He said the ruling is not an extension of a previous TRO on the power rate hike, as initially reported on DZMM.

"This is not effectively an extension, but a new TRO because there was a voting taken on the TRO. I am also told there will be two opinions issued in that particular case because there is a dissent," he explained.

The Supreme Court issued the decision during its summer session in Baguio City.

This was the second time that a TRO on the power rate adjustment was issued, after the high court slapped a 60-day TRO on December 23, 2013, and had extended it anew up to April 22 on Feb 18, 2014.

Meralco said it will respect the TRO on the rate hike.

"While we have yet to see and study the reported order of the High Court, we respect the Court's directive and will continue to wait its decision on the case," said Larry Fernandez, Meralco senior vice president and head utility economics department. - with reports from Ada Sibayan, ABS-CBN News North Luzon; Zhander Cayabyab, DZMM