‘False assurance’: Apo Agua, DCWD urged to restore roads by Apr 30

‘False assurance’: Apo Agua, DCWD urged to restore roads by Apr 30
Photo by Apo Agua Infrastructura, Inc./File photo

THE 20th Davao City Council on Tuesday, April 16, 2024, called on Apo Agua and the Davao City Water District (DCWD) to deliver their promise to complete the restoration of roads affected by the bulk water project by April 30.

The body approved the resolution after Davao City Councilor Bonz A. Militar cited the alleged dishonesty of the agencies as to the status of road repairs and improvements following the declaration that Apo Agua made during the February 13, 2024 session. 

"During the previous session on February 13, they said that they are already 99 percent complete in their restoration works, and after two months, they are still sa 99 percent sa road project? Ano ang ibig sabihin nito (what could be the meaning of this)? Maybe they are just giving us false details or false data," Militar said. 

He said it seems that the Council has been given false assurance on the agencies' commitment.

"It is not very proper because if you are going to come here in the council your data should be very accurate," Militar said, adding that if there are delays, the agencies should be transparent and reasons behind it should be properly explained. 

Militar also highlighted it was not the first time that Apo Agua requested an extension and the whole of Davao City knew what its commitment was.

He said that whenever road projects are involved, the city government is the first blamed by the public for the lack of progress and not the agencies.

"We have been very understanding and patient with their delays from the start of the operations until now with their remaining commitment to the city, however, we cannot just let the Dabawenyos suffer inconvenience due to their unfinished road repairs. So they need to shape up and deliver. They need to show up and explain," Militar said, adding that he is hoping that by the next session, Apo Agua will be present to explain the reasons for extending the repairs. 

With this note, Militar asked for the approval of the resolution demanding Apo Agua Infrastructura and DCWD to complete all the repair and restoration works for all roads affected by the bulk water project by April 30, 2024.

Jovana Cresta Duhaylungsod, DCWD representative, said that the water district has ongoing projects that entail excavation activities and they installed early warning systems for that. These excavations were necessary for mainline expansion and improvement to increase service coverage, improve water distribution efficiency, and pipeline leak repairs to reduce water losses, and pipeline declogging activities.

Duhaylungsod said that the timeline for the restoration projects that require excavation activities is May-September and some of these cannot be temporarily restored but they place excavation warning devices. 

"On the part of DCWD, as part of our commitment to helping minimize the inconvenience that these excavation activities may possibly (give) to the general public, in terms of monitoring, we have a dedicated unit that goes around the city to always check daily for the integrity of the early warning devices, to correct if ever may mga early warning devices na ma-damage. We also have daily reporting with photos from our departments and our contractors sending the status of all early warning devices and open trenches and excavation activities," Duhaylungsod said. She said the photos are sent before 5 p.m. or before the rush hour.

She added that as they saw the increase in leak and declogging repairs of their mainline, as a result of the additional supply of bulk water, they expect an increase in excavation activities and that they will continue their outsourcing of the restoration works, especially in major thoroughfares, to further fast-track these activities.

Duhaylungsod said that by May, they expect the delivery of more early warning devices.                                                                                                                        More updates on the road restoration under the bulk water project will be available by May 14, as the Council will invite on that date Apo Agua to relay project updates.  

Vice Mayor J. Melchor V. Quitain, in a statement during the session, said that hopefully by then, the Council will be able to receive news or updates on the road restoration. CIO

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