‘Your water stinks, Maynilad’
MANILA, Philippines – Consumers challenged Maynilad officials to drink the turbid water from their tap as they lamented the subpar service of the water concessionaire.
In a protest action on Thursday, members of Bayan – Manila, pounded the gates of the company’s office in Ermita while carrying buckets and cups of murky water collected from their homes.
Maynilad, however, assured that flushing operations are being carried out to address the problem.
“Pambihira naman, ginawa na ngang pribado ang tubig, mahal na nga ang tubig, wala na nga sa gobyerno ang serbisyo sa tubig, ganto pa ang nararanasan ng mga mamamayan…marumi, mabaho, tuloy-tuloy na water interruption ang nararanasan natin (Water service has been privatized, it is costly and yet we get dirty, smelly water and experience supply interruptions),” Mona Reyes, spokesperson of Bayan Manila, said during the protest.
Emy Feliciano, a Maynilad consumer who joined the protest, said that the water comming out from her faucet is not safe for cooking.
“Tignan niyo ang tubig niyo na binibigay sa amin. Napakadumi, minsan napakabaho (The water supplied to us is dirty, and at times stinky),” she said.
The protesters also appealed to the Duterte administration to address water supply and other problems affecting the people.
‘Take the first sip’
The protesters dared Maynilad to validate the safety of the water it is supplying to consumers by “taking the first sip.”
Manila residents who joined the demonstration held cups of turbid water, labeled with the name of Maynilad officers.
Jennifer Rufo, Maynilad spokesperson, said the cases of discolored water from its consumers’ faucets are “isolated incidents.”
She added that the water concessionaire, which supplies water to the west zone of Metro Manila, does not advise its customers to drink their water if it appears to be discolored.
“May mga isolated areas…na naging severe yung discoloration. Those are isolated incidents that we have to really address. We will not tell our costumers to drink it, of course, Rufo told INQUIRER.net in a phone interview.
Rufo likewise noted that Maynilad is conducting flushing operations in areas with severe water discoloration.
“We hear naman our customers, we hear their concerns, and we are doing something about it. What we’re doing right now is, ina-isolate namin yung mga lugar kung saan naging severe yung discoloration, and what we’re doing is we’re conducting flushing operations sa mga lugar na ‘to. Kasi by flushing the network, kahit papano natatanggal natin yung mga sumasamang mineral deposits sa flow ng water,” she explained.
“Kasi that way, kahit papano, lilinaw yung tubig sa network dun sa mga lugar na yan, and then at the same time, yung mga customer na nag-complain na dumaan sa metro nila yung tubig, we will replace that na lang with water delivered through our water tankers,” she added.
Rufo further said that the situation concerning the discoloration of its water supply in some areas “should improve in the coming days as we flush out all mineral deposits that have been scoured in our pipelines.”
“We have already isolated the areas where the discoloration has been severe, and are intensifying our flushing operations to clear out the water supply,” she said. /gsg/ac
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