Saturday, May 25, 2019

Council asks water district to explain joint venture project

THE City Council of Bacolod, through Councilor Wilson “Jun” Gamboa Jr., passed a resolution reiterating the request to the board of directors of the Bacolod City Water District (Baciwa), led by Chairman Lorendo K. Dilag, to provide the council with the data and explanation in relation to the approval of the unsolicited proposal of Prime Water for a joint venture (JV) project.

Based on the approved resolution, the Council wants to see the financial report of the water district in the past five years and a comparative study among other water districts that have a JV. The Council also asked for the content of the unsolicited proposal.

Gamboa cited Article II Section 16 of the 1987 Constitution, which provides, “the State shall protect and advance the right of the people to a balanced and healthful ecology in accord with the rhythm and harmony of nature.”

He said that Section 26 of the Local Government Code also provides that “It shall be the duty of every national agency or government-owned or controlled corporation authorizing or involved in the planning and implementation of any project or program that may cause pollution, climate change, depletion of non-renewable resources, loss of cropland, rangeland or forest cover and extinction of animal or plant species to consult with the local government units, non-government organizations, and other sectors concerned and explain the goals and objectives of the project or program, its impact upon the people and community in terms of environmental or ecological balance and the measure that will be undertaken to prevent or minimize the adverse effects thereof.”

He further cited Resolution No. 87 Series of 2019 passed during the January 23 session, asking Dilag to explain the content of the water district’s Board Resolution No. 282 dated December 8, 2018, approving the unsolicited proposal of Prime Water for a JV.

In a separate resolution, also authored by Gamboa, the Council also enjoined Baciwa to institute measures to ensure adequate clean water supply in Bacolod City establishments and households during the El Niño phenomenon.

The El Niño will linger in Negros Occidental until November, as confirmed earlier by Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol during his recent visit to Sagay City.

Gamboa reminded Baciwa of Section 15 of Article II of the Constitution of the Philippines, which provides that the State shall protect and promote the right to health of the people and instill health consciousness among them as well a censure the delivery of clean water to the citizens.

The Baciwa was created by virtue of Presidential Decree No. 198, operating under the quasi-public type corporation to provide clean water to Bacolod City establishments and households.


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