By Macon Ramos-Araneta
Senate Minority Leader Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III on Monday said senators will be forced to conduct a hearing on the looming water crisis to know the plans of concerned agencies.
If the water companies will continue to remain silent about it, Pimentel said will be willing to file a resolution for the conduct of a Senate investigation, adding that all in the government should be anticipatory and not just passive.
Pimentel also said the government has “specialist agencies” on water and that “we should be hearing from them now. They are very quiet.”
Sen. Nancy Binay added that the issue of a water crisis and El Nino are all issues that the public is involved in.
However, she said addressing the water crisis “does not lie on the shoulder only of one sector, institution, agency or company.”
She said everybody should be prepared for this. “While we have always been affected by El Nino, we were however always surprised by the lack of water supply during summertime,” she said.
On the part of the government, she said it would be much appreciated if the National Water Regulatory Board (NWRB) can share its holistic and comprehensive water resource plan, their water allocation and reuse policy down to the LGUs so that it can be implemented in the community level.
She said we also want to know how many rainwater collection system (RWCS) in the more than 42,000 barangays nationwide were built or are being built by the government since RA 6716 was enacted into law in 1989,
She also questioned who’s in charge of the project’s maintenance, how many were not functioning, or how many of these needed rehabilitation.
“El Nino is here, and food and water crisis are real,” she said.
“We no longer want to go back to lines and water rationing,” she said.
The lady senator also appealed to consumers to start saving water and encourage our household members to be practical in using water.