Water rationing in city barangays still ‘pending’

THE plan of the Iloilo City government to ration water to drought-affected barangays in partnership with Metro Iloilo Water District has yet to start. (File)

By: Emme Rose Santiagudo

WATER rationing in Iloilo City has yet to start a week after the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO) promised to do so.

The rationing is part of the city government’s measure to address the water crisis that worsened at the height of the El Niño phenomenon.

The Sangguniang Panlungsod on April 26, 2019 declared a state of calamity in Iloilo City due to water crisis.

While documents for the water procurement have been submitted to the Bids and Awards Committee (BAC) on May 14, General Services Office (GSO) head Joren Sartorio said the papers still need clarification.

“May mga bagay pa to nga dapat ma-clarify kay for one ang approved budget for the contract (ABC) rests upon the approval of the Metro Iloilo Water District (MIWD) board. Amo na ang kailangan iresolve kay kung indi, indi ta ka-deliver water,” he said.

MIWD is expected to supply the city’s water needs upon the declaration of the state of calamity.

The city government will pay MIWD for the volume of water it will draw after entering into a memorandum of agreement (MOA).

According to Sartorio, they will be undertaking emergency procurement as recommended by the end user which is MIWD.

“The recommendation sa end user was to procure under emergency procurement. Ara pa kita dira subong. Since we have identified MIWD, didto anay kita mauna,” he said.

If it fails, Sartorio said it is up to the city government and MIWD to decide on the issue.

 “If they can offer a similar price, we can invite them for negotiation. The approved budget is at P23 per cubic meter,” he said.

CDRRMO head Donna Magno said that the city will spend around P8.390 million for water rationing to affected barangays for 90 days if the cost is pegged at P23 per cubic meter.

But according to Sartorio, MIWD is also waiting for the memorandum of agreement from the city government.

“We only submitted a purchase request sa may BAC. It is currently pending because we cannot proceed since wala kita basis for negotiation for the procurement of water,” he said.

A total of 117,265 residents were affected by the water crisis due to El Niño, according to the CDRRMO.