Former Vice President and senatorial aspirant Jejomar Binay said on Thursday, Feb. 24, that in order to ensure access to clean and potable water for more Filipinos, more public and private partnerships are needed in solving the water supply problem of the country.
“Mayroon pa rin tayong mga kababayan na naiiwan. Ang kawalan ng sapat at ligtas na tubig ay may implikasyon din sa kalusugan ng ating mga mamamayan (We still have countrymen who are experiencing the lack of safe water supplies, which in effect, has a severe implication on their health and safety),” Binay said.
Binay aired his concern after the Manila Water and Sewerage System (MWSS) and the National Irrigation Authority (NIA) said they were preparing mitigation programs to address the potential water shortages in April.
He cited a Unicef-World Health Organization report indicating that only 47.46 percent of Filipinos had access to safely managed drinking water in 2020.
He said among the issues that need to be addressed are finding new water sources for the growing population, finding sufficient funds for new water projects, and ensuring resilient water system structures.
“Ang mga problemang iyan ay kabilang sa mga hahanapan natin ng solusyon sa ilalim ng ating programang serbisyong patubig at pangkalusugan (We will find a solution to these problems under our program of improving the water supply of the country and health of its citizens,” Binay said.
Binay explained that he will work to foster greater cooperation among local government units, local water districts, national government agencies, and the private sector. He said that these concerns need to be addressed in order to meet the global target of having clean water and sanitation for all by 2030.
“Bagamat unti-unting tumataas taon-taon ang bilang ng mga kababayan natin na may access sa hand washing facilities, sanitation facilities, at malinis na tubig, kailangan pa ring siguruhin na lahat ay may access dito, lalo na sa mga probinsya (Even if the number of people having access to hand washing facilities is slightly improving, sanitation facilities and clean water continue to increase every year, we must still ensure that everyone have access to these especially in the provinces)," Binay said.