Thursday, February 7, 2008

DCWD Get's Ire Of Councilors For Delay In Bago Oshiro Water Project

Councilor Rachel Zozobrado expressed her disappointment and irritation over Davao City Water District’s failure to inform the concerned government offices about the P11,839.70 disinfection fee which caused a one year delay in the implementation of a water project in Sitio Cebuda, Bago Oshiro this city.

Both Zozobrado and councilor Bonifacio Militar of the Committee on Rules (who presided over the committee hearing) criticized DCWD for prejudicing the right of the people to have potable water.

It can be recalled that Zozobrado lashed against the Bureau of Plant and Industry during her privilege speech at the city council last week for causing the delay in the last and final stages of the project just because of its contention that installing a main water line in the barangay will only encourage more squatters in the area.

The project, which would have provided water to at least 120 residents in the area, was funded through the Annual Development Fund of former councilor Jesus Zozobrado. However, it suffered a setback in 2007 when DCWF refused to conduct hydrotesting for the project (which was already 90% completed at that time) until the problem with BPI has been resolved.

The hydrotesting kink has been resolved but a year after that, not even one drop of water has come out from that main water line. And this time, it is because of the disinfection fee being demanded by DCWD.

Engineer Rosendo Almonte, chief of DCWD’s Planning and Design Division, said they cannot process the work order until the P11,839.70 disinfection fee is paid. He said the contractor has been informed about it during the hydrotesting but admitted that such requirement was not included in the project design which DCWD prepared and was therefore not included in the contract price.

“Ngano wala man naapil ang disinfection fee sa project design na gigamit pag compute sa project cost, na naapil man gain ang hydrotesting fee,” Zozobrado said.

Almonte admitted that DCWD did not ask payment for the disinfection before but due to the high cost of materials, it has started asking the fee after the project was designed. He added “siguro naa mi mali kay wala man ni naapil sa estimate sa project cost.”

Zozobrado said she is willing to pay the cost of the disinfection fee provided DCWD commits to completing the project as soon as possible so the people would not suffer from lack of water connection in the area.

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