Water shortage not due to 'manipulation', says Manila Water

Kevin Manalo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 11 2019 10:55 PM

Residents fall in line to fetch water from a fire hydrant made accessible by fire volunteers in Barangay Barangka Drive in Mandaluyong City on Monday. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

MANILA - Manila Water denied allegations on Monday that water shortages in certain areas were caused by the company's "manipulation" of water supplies.

Amid complaints that some areas have to resort to water rationing while other areas still had normal water pressure, Manila Water communications manager Dittie Galang said this was because the company maintains separate reservoirs in different areas.

"Ang sistema ng Manila Water may hiwa-hiwalay yan na reservoirs, hiwa-hiwalay yan para rin sa reliability at redundancy para sakaling yung iba may problema pwede i-isolate," Galang said.

(Manila Water's system maintains separate reservoirs for reliability and redundancy so if there's a problem, it's easier to isolate.)

"Yung sinasabi nila na minamanipula hindi po totoo. Design po yan ng system.”

(Allegations of manipulation are not true. That's just how the system is designed.)

Water supply in parts of Mandaluyong, Pasig, San Juan, and Rizal province remain problematic according to Manila Water.

Galang said there were 60,000 households affected by the low water supply or 260,000 individuals from Thursday up to this weekend.

She said this was partly because many customers were storing water, even those who didn't need to.

"May ilang reservoirs na ambilis na na-deplete dahil sa high demand. Hindi namin inaasahan na kahit yung di gaano apektado [low water supply] ay nag-antabay na rin."

(Some reservoirs were quickly depleted because of high demand. We didn't expect that even those who won't be affected by low water supply also stored water.)

Galang said the surge in demand during the 12 midnight to 4:00 a.m. window was too much for reservoirs in the East Zone.

The most affected reservoir is in San Juan City, where the water service is still not normal.

However, customers need not worry about their water bills because Manila Water will only charge for water that has been used, she said.

Galang said La Mesa Dam’s water supply is lower this year compared to last year.

Manila Water is finishing a water treatment facility in Cardona, Rizal which will draw water from Laguna Lake. The company expects to start operating it by the second quarter of the year.