YouTube video by Rappler Duterte shakes MVP’s hand after months of rants over water deals
Are they just playing nice on the water crisis?
Following months of tirades, President Rodrigo Duterte and businessman Manny Pangilinan play nice in their first public meeting on March 3, 2020. They may look like they’re playing nice on the country’s water crisis but that’s what civil people do.Filipinos can only hope that they would put their acts together.
Senator Imee Marcos calls for ‘fast track construction of water flagship projects’
Senator Imee Marcos initially calls on the government to hasten the construction of water flagship projects. This includes the Kaliwa and Laiban dams. She hopes to make the water agency and two concessionaires accountable for the water shortage. The water rate is very high but the service is not at par, she said. She adds that the public deserves better service than what the two concessionaires render.
Duterte and MVP
President Rodrigo Duterte and businessman Manny V. Pangilinan exchange pleasantries. This is during their first public appearance together on Thursday, March 5. After reading his remarks, President Duterte shakes Pangilinan’s hand as he returns to his seat. The businessman stands up to greet the President. The two had a quick chat during the inspection of the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) Harbor Link Circumferential Road 3. Senator Bong Go then updates reporters that Duterte invited Pangilinan for a meeting “soon.” Duterte previously rants on the Ayala-led Manila Water and Maynilad upon the start of the water crisis in March 2019. That prompts him to order a review of the firms’ agreements with the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System.
By: Elena Grace Flores
The water crisis is real. In other countries where potable water is scarce like Norway, it is regarded as food. The country now experiences water shortage but this is not the case of dwindling supply from the sources yet. Various reservoirs like in Laguna for Manila and in Luyang, Carmen for Cebu still generate water abundantly but it is the connections or distributions systems that disrupt them from supplying the households. Senator Imee Marcos said that inequality is evident. Poorer neighborhoods obviously suffer from a lack of water. Even Luyang itself does not benefit much from their own water. The concessionaires have something to explain.
YouTube video by PTV NEWS BREAK: Senate Resolution na bubusisi sa kontrata at record ng Manila Water at Maynilad, inihain
Senate Resolution to Look into the Water Crisis
Senate Resolution 259 by Senator Imee Marcos seeks to examine the provisions of the concession agreements. It aims to know why water companies failed to meet their public service obligations.
Acting on the President’s Lament
The water companies drew the ire of President Rodrigo Duterte. This is after they sued the government and were awarded P10 billion by a Singapore-based arbitration court for losses they claimed to suffer because they were not allowed to raise their rates for water in the country.
Marcos said Manila Water and Maynilad have failed to live up to their mandate to ensure an uninterrupted supply of drinking-quality water by June 30, 2000. This should be three years after the government privatized water services. In fact, daily water interruptions since October have become the rule rather than the exception, Marcos said. The Cebu provincial board echoes Marcos’ concern and now looks into the breaches that the joint-venture made that caused the water supply interruptions in the province. The people are anxiously waiting for immediate solutions to the water crisis.