Baciwa union scores privatization-A A +A
Thursday, March 7, 2013
MEMBERS and officers of the Bacolod City Water District (Baciwa) labor union are demanding from the board that they revoke a resolution giving way to privatization of the repair of the water pipelines and Non-Revenue Water through a new loan pegged at P400 million.
Union president Claudio Salmo also scored Baciwa Director Marichi Ramos for coming up with such board resolution.
He said that in previous months, especially in December 20, 2012 when Ramos has not yet assumed the directorship, the board has come up with a resolution rejecting two unsolicited proposals from the Manila Water Company and Maynilad, and instead approved an in-house undertaking by the Baciwa in-house technicians.
Manila Water offered P444 million for the project, while Maynilad offered P1.4 billion.
The Technical Working Group of Baciwa presented a P291-million budget for the said project.
To their surprise, Salmo said that on February 21, the board passed a revised resolution to cater to the two proponents of the project and that on February 25, Maynilad has lowered its project proposal to P534 million.
"We sensed something wrong because the lowering of their price was very abrupt," Salmo said.
He also questioned the qualification of Ramos to sit at the Baciwa Board and lamented the questioning of the capabilities of their in-house technicians to complete such project.
He said they are against the public private partnership for fears that this may result in water rate increase, as private companies would usually go after profit, as they are profit-oriented.
Meanwhile, Ramos, in a press conference last Tuesday, also revealed that no other than lawyer Pompeyo Querobin, former chairman of the Baciwa board, furnished the Local Water Utilities Administration (LWUA) a dossier and documents against her questioning her qualification to sit at the Baciwa board.
She said they also got threats even at her clinic just to stop her from looking for pertinent documents pertaining to some transactions at Baciwa.
Ramos also exposed the alleged certification of completion of a project from the P580-million loan of Baciwa from LWUA when in fact, the project is not yet completed.
She said those who signed in the certification could be charged for falsification before the Office of the Ombudsman.
Ramos also stressed that she is not a proponent of privatization of a Baciwa project and that she is qualified to sit as director of the water district. (TDE)
Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on March 07, 2013.