• Trashing MWSS pacts bad move?

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    Terminating the contracts between the state-run Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) and two water concessionaires Manila Water Company, Inc. and Maynilad Water Services, Inc. won’t necessarily improve services, a veteran lawmaker said Friday.

    Mandaluyong Rep. Neptali Gonzales 2nd, who is assured of retaining his House Majority leader post when Congress opens its First Regular Session on July 22, made the pronouncement in light of the mounting calls for the MWSS to severe its pacts with two water concessionaires which have been found to charging their customers of their corporate income taxes by embedding them on their tariffs.

    The MWSS’ pacts with the two concessionaires, Gonzales said, granted 30 percent discount to the water dues for non-revenue offices and agencies such as hospitals, city and municipal jails, police stations and public schools.

    “Discussions should continue regarding the current issues surrounding the concession agreements of Manila Water Company, Inc. and Maynilad Water Services, Inc. and the water tariff setting mechanism provided in these agreements, but it should be done objectively and dispassionately,” Gonzales said in a statement.

    Gonzales said that government deals with the concessionaires have also resulted in faster pace of installation of new water connections because there were 62,382 water connections made since the privatization efforts in 1997.

    Llanesca T. Panti

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