Iloilo City grapples with water shortage

By Mariela Angella Oladive

General Services Office (GSO) head Engr. Neil Ravena confirmed that approximately 15 percent of the total population in Iloilo City has been affected due to the ongoing El Niño-induced water shortage.

In an interview, Ravena highlighted the widespread challenges faced by residents due to water scarcity.

He emphasized that the situation has reached a critical point, prompting considerations for declaring a state of calamity in the affected areas this week or in the coming week.

Such a declaration would enable the provision of emergency assistance to those in dire need.

He disclosed that a significant number of barangays, particularly those situated in coastal areas, the Jaro district, and the City Proper, are most affected.

The impact of the water shortage extends beyond residential areas, with public spaces like plazas, the Butterfly Garden, and the Koi Pond in La Paz also feeling the effects.

Additionally, wells traditionally used by communities for water access are now running dry, exacerbating the crisis.

As efforts intensify to address the pressing issue, Ravena and other stakeholders under the El Niño Task Force are closely monitoring the situation. They are actively evaluating measures to mitigate the adverse effects of the water shortage on residents and critical infrastructure.

On the other hand, the City Government is taking proactive measures to address the looming water crisis.

Ravena said the mayor has ordered the accounting of water tanks distributed by the local government last year to facilitate the scheduling of water rationing.

The Iloilo City’s El Niño task force plans to deploy Metro Pacific Iloilo Water (MPIW) trucks to deliver water to affected areas, where water tanks will be installed.

With no immediate relief in sight, the city braces itself for potentially challenging weeks ahead, as the dry weather continues.

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