SC imposes almost P2B fine on MWSS, Maynilad, Manila Water
MANILA, Philippines —The Supreme Court on Tuesday ordered Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) and two water concessionaires to pay fines of almost P2 billion for non-compliance with the Clean Water Act.
In its unanimous ruling, the Court, through Associate Justice Ramon Paul L. Hernando, ordered Maynilad and MWSS to jointly and severally pay P921,464,184 for the period of May 7, 2009 to date of promulgation.
The same amount of fine is required for Manila Water to be paid jointly and severally with MWSS.
Both concessionaires are required to pay the fine within 15 days from receipt of the decision, high court’s Information Chief and Spokesman Atty. Brian Keith Hosaka said.
From receipt of the decision until fully paid, the petitioners shall be fined the initial amount of P322, 102.00 per day subject to 10 percent increase every two years as provided under the Clean Water Act.
The Court added that a six percent per annum shall also be applied until fully satisfied.
The High Court’s ruling affirmed the decision of the Court of Appeals in 2013 that upheld the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) order imposing a fine on the MWSS and its two concessionaires.
Under the Clean Water Act, MWSS and its concessionaires are required to provide wastewater treatment facilities and to connect sewage lines in all establishments, including households to an available sewerage system within five years upon effectivity of the Clean Water Act on March 6, 2004.
The DENR’s strict implementation of the Clean Water Act is part of its effort to rehabilitate the Manila Bay.
The DENR said part of what is causing the degradation of Manila Bay’s water is due to poor sewerage systems and improper disposal of household water. /je
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