Water firm assures city’s supply amid shortage

South Balibago Water Resources Inc. (SBRI) Branch Manager Rodeyn Ngipen (center) assures preparedness to provide water in Iloilo City during a press briefing on May 1.

By Mariela Angella Oladive

South Balibago Water Resources Inc. (SBRI) is prepared to augment Iloilo City’s water supply to address shortages induced by the ongoing El Niño.

The response comes after the city declared a state of calamity on April 22 due to severe water shortages affecting over 20,000 residents across 25 barangays, including those in the city proper, Arevalo, and Mandurriao districts.

“We have a sufficient water supply. We are running at 8-9 million liters per day (MLD) during peak hours. Currently, we have 10 MLD, and we also have reserve tanks that can augment during peak hours, reaching a maximum of up to 14 MLD,” stated Rodelyn Ngipen, manager of SBRI, during a press briefing on May 1.

Ngipen outlined the company’s readiness to deliver water as soon as the city government finalizes its bidding process.

“After we confirm how much will be awarded to us by the city government in the bidding, we can start supplying as early as the first week of May,” she explained.

Jose Rey B. Delfin, Area Manager of SBRI, highlighted ongoing coordination with Metro Pacific Iloilo Water (MPIW), the primary utility provider in the city, to ensure that the community’s needs are met, especially as MPIW’s resources are stretched.

Delfin assured that despite potential slowdowns from low tide and maintenance at their primary source, the Jalaur River in Pototan, Iloilo, the company is well-prepared.

He noted that to bolster water supply during emergencies, especially during El Niño, they installed water pumps imported from Germany as backup.

“Our service area has no significant issues. Of course, it’s not perfect, but our service commitment is consistent; we deliver on a daily basis. We have 24/7 water availability, 16 psi water pressure, and potable water,” he added.

Delfin emphasized the company’s commitment to consistent service, mentioning their capability to sustain water delivery even during high demand periods.

“Provided the distribution isn’t limited to a certain number of hours, as long as it’s a 24-hour cycle, we can deliver,” he asserted.

SBRI serves 6,000 to 7,000 customers, including bulk customers, and is planning further expansion dependent on the city’s situation and regulatory approvals.

To help customers conserve water, Company Engineer Shiela Arnaiz and Customer Service Associate Rhea Libo-on provided tips on managing water use efficiently, including fixing leaky faucets and investing in water-efficient fixtures.


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