Manila Water must pay consumers -- Hontiveros

SENATOR Risa Hontiveros wanted Manila Water (MW) to compensate consumers due to the inconveniences brought by the water crisis to millions of households.

Hontiveros, who is vice-chair of the Senate Committee on Health, said many people were exposed to health risks as a result of Manila Water’s failure to meet its service obligation and should be fairly reimbursed.

She cited as an example the National Kidney Transplant Institute (NKTI) which was forced to cut the number of its dialysis patients during the water shortage.

She said Manila Water must compensate all affected households and businesses for lost time, gross inconvenience and loss of profit.

“While Manila Water’s public apology and act to hold itself responsible for the water shortage are recognized, a fair and just compensation to the consumers is in order. It is one of the best ways to demonstrate its firm commitment to public accountability and restore consumer trust and confidence,” Hontiveros said.

In Malacanang, President Rodrigo Duterte was set last night to meet with officials of the MWSS  and discuss  the regulator’s response to the water shortage affecting parts of Metro Manila and Rizal province.

The President earlier ordered the MWSS to release 150 days of water supply from Angat Dam to those affected by the water shortage.

Meanwhile, the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) distributed 1,033,000 liters of clean and safe water to around 43,000 individuals in several hospitals in Metro Manila.

Among the hospitals were Rizal Medical Center, Quirino Memorial Medical Center, National Kidney and Transplant Institute, East Avenue Medical Center, Mandaluyong City Medical Center, and the National Center for Mental Health.

PRC has also provided water in communities in Bgy. Old Balara and Bgy. Culiat in Quezon City; Bgy. Highway Hills in Mandaluyong; and Bgy. Tumana and Bgy. Nangka in Marikina.

With Efren Montano and Arlene Rivera