Baciwa general manager ‘trustworthy, competent’

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Thursday, August 21, 2014


BACOLOD City Water District (Baciwa) director Cecilia Abello Henares defended embattled general manager Juliana Carbon, saying she is trustworthy and competent.

“I have no knowledge if she has any wrongdoing. As chairperson of the committee on personnel matters, I find their actions of putting GM Carbon under preventive suspension oppressive,” Henares said.

About three weeks ago, three directors including board chairman Lawrence Villanueva, vice chairman Lorendo Dilag and director Marichi Ramos, voted to suspend Carbon for several reasons such as misrepresentation of the Murcia Water District bulk water supply contract with Baciwa, giving representation and transportation allowance without a Board approval, and alleged non-disclosure of the P241-million retained earnings of Baciwa.

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However, Carbon said her suspension is unlawful.

For her part, Henares said Carbon is a permanent employee of the district since 1985.

“As such, if she is ever accused of any infraction, she must be given due process,” she said.

The three directors had also appointed former banker Darwin Destacamento as officer-in-charge of the Office of the General Manager.

“He is not an employee of the water district. I do not know him and his track record. We cannot give the management and leadership of a vital utility to the hands of a person we do not know. Not even for a single day,” Henares said.

She added that the resolution appointing Destacamento is invalid as it was passed without a quorum and the required majority votes.

The Local Water Utilities Administration (LWUA) is expected to appoint an interim general manager this week.

“I urgently appeal to the LWUA to intervene or arbitrate in the present controversy besetting the water district. I trust that this matter will be cleared immediately in order to ensure the people of Bacolod that Baciwa service will go on and become better,” Henares said.

Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on August 21, 2014.

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