ILOILO CITY: The city council approved a resolution on Tuesday declaring the entire city of Iloilo under the state of calamity because of acute water shortage and poor water services of its water provider Metro Iloilo Water District.
City Councilor Plaridel Nava, chairman of the ways and means committee, said the calamity declaration follows the city council’s action on April 21 in declaring the city under a state of imminent water crisis as recommended by Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog and the City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (CDRRMC).
Mabilog endorsed to the city council Resolution No. 001, Series of 2015 of the CDRRMC for the declaration of water crisis and allocating funds of P3 million from the Quick Response Fund (QRF) to be utilized for possible water rationing.
Nava said the water crisis has reached the highest level in the city that it needs intervention from the city government, as several barangays (villages) are reeling from acute water shortage.
CDRRMC chief Darwin Papa said the latest memorandum policy showed that for an area to be declared a calamity area, at least two barangays and 20 percent of the population should be affected by the severe dry spell. The declaration will also allow the affected barangays to use a portion of their 5-percent calamity fund for quick response and mitigation projects.
City Councilor Joshua Alim said the League of Barangays is closely monitoring the crisis situation and more than 10 barangays are affected with the dry spell. Water rationing is being conducted in these areas with funds from the P3-million QRF. However, the barangays must also use their own funds to help mitigate the situation.
Alim also wants to conduct an ocular inspection next week of the MIWD plant in Sta. Barbara, and the private bulk water plant of Flow Water Resources in Baranga Nanga, Pototan, to help assess the water crisis.
MIWD has the franchise to deliver potable water supply to the municipalities of Maasin, Cabatuan, Sta. Barbara, Pavia, Leganes, San Miguel and Oton, and Iloilo City.