Gov’t kicks off water project for ‘Yolanda’ housing
By Sarwell Meniano, Philippine News Agency | January 18, 2019
TACLOBAN CITY — The central government kicked off on Friday the PHP404.77 million design and build water supply project for resettlement sites meant for 14,000 families badly-hit by Super Typhoon Yolanda in this city.
Presidential Assistant Wendel Avisado, the official assigned by President Rodrigo R. Duterte to oversee post-Yolanda rehabilitation efforts, and Local Water Utilities Authority (LWUA) Administrator Jeci Lapus led the groundbreaking of the project in Cabalawan village here.
“This is a commitment of President Duterte to provide water system to the resettlement sites. I’ve been linking up with LWUA for several months. The turning point was when the city government asserted its right to manage the water district. They took over the project and LWUA approved it,” Avisado told reporters here.
During the third commemoration of “ Yolanda” on Nov. 8, 2016, Duterte directed concerned national government officials to do everything they can to provide water for relocation sites. The project was not realized immediately due to procurement-related concerns.
“There were many issues during the past administrations and we could not easily download the money for the project. We are happy that local officials here really pushed for this project and offered to help in the implementation process,” Lapus said.
The LWUA official expects the project to be ready to provide water to two resettlement sites before the end of March.
Late last year, LWUA agreed to delegate its authority to implement the project to the Leyte Metropolitan Water District (LMWD) after failure of biddings in Manila.
The two winning bidders were the Cebu-based Mactan Rock Industries, Inc. and the Pangasinan-based TGV Builders, Inc. The developers entered a joint venture to implement the much-awaited project.
The project includes two areas. The first is the PHP404.77-million project to extend water distribution pipes, develop two new sources in the city’s northern villages, set up and repair old pumping stations, set up a new reservoir, and rehabilitate the existing reservoir.
The other phase is the PHP90-million project intended to rehabilitate the city’s water pipes.
The LWUA and LMWD signed a memorandum of agreement for the transfer of funds, in response to the request of the city government to pass the responsibility of supervising the project from the national government to the local water district.
The government aims to move 14,000 families from danger zones to the resettlement sites. Thousands of housing units have been awarded, but some families have refused to stay in the relocation sites due to water supply problems. (PNA)
Read original: Philippine News Agency