Manila Water waiving of basic charge for April a good start for accountability but not enough, says Bayan Muna

Bayan Muna chairman and Makabayan senatorial candidate Neri Colmenares with fishermen in Masinloc, Zambales.

MANILA – Bayan Muna chairman and Makabayan senatorial candidate Neri Colmenares and Bayan Muna Rep. Carlos Isagani Zarate today said that Manila Water’s waiving of the minimum water charge for all customers in the April bill is a good start but it should not stop with this.

This developed after Bayan, Bayan Muna and Manila Water customers filed a petition at the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) yesterday to hold Manila Water accountable for the 1 week water interruption.

“This is a welcome development but we hope that Manila Water will not think that everything would be forgotten after this. They should also further improve the plugging of their water leakages to lower their system’s loss so that water interruptions would be prevented,” said Colmenares.

“Manila Water and MWSS should also stop pushing for the Kaliwa dam for it is already exposed as an environmentally dangerous project and funded by a very onerous loan. It also raises more suspicion that the supposed water shortage was artificial and was just created to justify the railroading of the Kaliwa dam,” added the Makabayan senatorial bet.

Meanwhile Rep. Zarate, as one of the petitioners against Manila Water said that “while the waiving of the basic charge of Manila Water is a positive start it does not preclude affected customers from still going to court and ask for further redress.”

Rep. Zarate said aside from the bill waiver, Manila Water should, among others, also compensate the damages they caused the consumers and be ordered to stop collecting the rate increase allowed last year by the MWSS.

“We will continue to seek accountability from Manila Water and MWSS for this catastrophic, greed-induced problem,” said the progressive solon.

“Making these people accountable will ensure that this would never happen again and government should look out more for the interest of consumers,” said Rep. Zarate. []


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