Everyone needs clean water. Clean water is a human right but Bacolodnons are barely getting any.
For us to drink, bathe ourselves with, clean our dishes, and observe hygiene and sanitation, water is a need for us to survive. That is why the United Nations affirmed that having access to clean water is necessary for human beings to live, and live with dignity.
However, in Bacolod, despite the takeover and the promise of a multi-billion peso corporation to improve the service of the water utility, filtering our water faucets and storing water has become part of our daily lives.
Almost every day, you can see consumers complaining about the coffee or tea-like color of contaminated water flowing into our kitchen faucets and bathrooms.
On top of the disgusting quality of the water, in other areas of Bacolod, some residents would only have access to water for two hours or even less despite paying full price to the water corporation.
The United Nations in 2010 explicitly recognized that clean water and sanitation is a human right that is crucial to the achievement of other human rights.
Human rights are there to ensure that people can live with dignity.
But how can people live with dignity if they are being supplied with water that almost looks like it came from a dirty creek or a septic tank? How can people live with dignity if they need to wake up in the wee hours of the night so they can store enough water since the supply might be gone after a few hours?
UN-Water said that it is the duty of the government to ensure that its people have access to clean water and that it should take a human-rights-based approach in dealing with water issues and their policies should also be pro-poor.
In conclusion, the dire state of our water supply in Bacolod is a stark reminder that access to clean water is not just a necessity but a fundamental human right. The daily struggles of our community to secure clean water for basic needs are both unacceptable and, in the eyes of the United Nations, a violation of our rights to live with dignity.
Let us not allow the violation of our right to clean water to continue unchallenged. By continuing to raise awareness about this issue, we can create a groundswell of change that compels our local authorities and water utility to prioritize the well-being and dignity of every Bacolodnon.
Together, we can ensure that clean water, the essence of life, flows freely and consistently into every household in our city.*
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