Lay Catholic groups back graft case on Malampaya stake sale to Udenna

Lay Catholic groups back graft case on Malampaya stake sale to Udenna

By CBCP News

October 29, 2021

Manila, Philippines

A network of Catholic lay organizations has joined criticisms over the sale of Chevron’s stake in the Malampaya gas-to-power project to Udenna Corp, a conglomerate controlled by tycoon Dennis Uy.

The Sangguniang Laiko ng Pilipinas said it supports the graft case filed by some concerned citizens against Uy, Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi and others over the controversial deal.

“We agree with how the complainants describe this sale as the most incredible crony agreement in history,” said Laiko president Roquel Ponte.

He said the deal is unacceptable as it gave Uy, a known ally of President Rodrigo Duterte, a “horrendously appalling” undue advantage.

Ponte said the agreement is “tantamount to theft of our precious natural resources, and putting the country’s energy security at risk”.

He also said they support the efforts of the Senate Committee on Energy to look into the agreement.

“We call on the Senate of the Republic of the Philippines and the Office of the Ombudsman to exert every effort to protect the interest of the government and of our people,” Ponte said.

“We support the graft case filed against the Malampaya Stake Sale to Udenna,” he added.

The $4.5-billion Malampaya project in the offshore northwest Palawan supplies about 20 percent of the country’s energy requirements.

Udenna is set to control 90 percent of Malampaya, having bought the other 45 percent stake from Shell Philippines Exploration BV.

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