Promised water | The Daily Guardian


THE BOARD and management of the Bacolod Water District never learned the warning of US President Abraham Lincoln that “you cannot fool all the people all the time.” The presentation by BACIWA last Friday was just that – another attempt to fool the people that BACIWA has millions of liters of potable water by July, or just roughly in over a month. Of course the promised water can come after 60 days since it would still be July.

I have never heard or read in the Bible that Moses left to BACIWA the rod he used to strike the rock in the Sinai desert and there gushed forth water that does not need a permit from any government agency. So, where will BACIWA get the water it promised months ago and is still promising?

Sure, there is now plenty of water but this is rain down from the clouds since the wet season has come early this year. BACIWA cannot lay claim on it. What it did claim is a lot of bull… not water.

Two things came out in the forum last Friday. First, is the digging of more wells and second, the tapping of water from Ngalan River by Bacolod Bulk Water Incorporated that has a contract with BACIWA to deliver water to the thirsty Bacolod population. Like the Israelites in the desert, the people of Bacolod clamor for water from the BACIWA monopoly but unlike Moses, BACIWA just keeps on making promises it knows it cannot keep.

First, the digging of more wells. Has BACIWA secured a clearance and permit from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources? BACIWA did not say anything about this requirement because they have none. If it has, BACIWA would have made a lot of hay about it.

In fact, BACIWA admitted that most of their wells have no permit from DENR. What DENR is doing about this admission is being kept a secret. Why the omerta?

How then can it dig more wells? Is BACIWA above the law because it is a government entity?

I checked and BACIWA has not even applied for approval by the Sanggunian. How can it begin to drive a hole or even to seek an ECC from DENR? The BACIWA chairman, Lorendo Dilag and the manager, Mario Macatangay have the gall to promise the water when they have not even secured the mandatory provisions of law. In fact, on February 10, 2017, the DENR regional office said that BACIWA has not even applied for an ECC. If BACIWA had secured one, it would have paraded the clearance.

But getting the ECC was impossible because information says SP has not acted on any of such application. Dilag and board member Mona Jardin know this requirement but why did they allow this to happen? Why be a part of the deception of Bacolod that had reposed trust on them when they ran for public office and now sit in the BACIWA board? What made them silent and thus become part of this deception? Have they been bitten by the bug sucking integrity in that agency?

Let’s leave that point momentarily and focus on the second report – the tapping of the Ngalan River by the BBWI.

Reports say that the Office of the Building Official has issued a Notice of Violation to BBWI for constructing of water facilities in Barangay Granada without a permit. BBWI admitted this when it claims that it has a pending request before the Bacolod SP for a “resolution of no objection”. Ryan Yapkianwee claims there was “miscommunication” by the contractor that he paints to be ignorant of this requirement. Did he, as the owner and the responsible official, check the permits before giving the order to start work? Does Yapkianwee think he can fool the people of this city with this inane confession?

Sure he can pay the fine. BBWI will get lots of money from this contract for 25 years. But that is not the point. He cannot claim ignorance and blame his contractor who ought to know the basic requirement in projects of this nature and size. Does he think he can fool us with this “miscommunication” excuse?

He is also justifying the haste in this construction so that BBWI can “provide water right away” and “faster in order to address the needs of the city.”

Let’s continue tomorrow to expose these dissimulations.

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