Marcos urges water concessionaires to accept new contract of Duterte admin

Maynilad Water Services.

MANILA, Philippines – Neophyte Senator Imee Marcos on Wednesday has urged water concessionaires to study and accept the new contract of President Rodrigo Duterte.

Marcos said it is the Filipino people’s human right to have reliable, affordable water.

“Any commercial interests can only be secondary to that right,” Marcos said.

For his part, Senator Bong Go said since water is essential to life and very basic to our existence, it cannot be left alone to business corporations to decide.

Their primary objective, he said,  is to earn a profit.

“I have nothing against private business per se. But I have everything against bad business practices,” he said.

He said the water concessionaires were given by the President the opportunity to fix their services with a new contract without onerous provisions.

“PRRD said this is just two things– Maynilad and Manila Water accept the revised contract, or they won’t accept the revised contract and they cannot operate. Then we can push to nationalize the water concession and ensure that the government can deliver quality services,” said  Go.

“Having said these, even if they accept the new contracts, as a Senator who also considers access to clean water as a public health issue, nothing should prevent the government from determining and bringing to justice those responsible for acts against the best interests of the Filipino people,” said Go.

He said a new water concession agreement should not erase whatever their accountability was in the past.

He  noted that the people have suffered too long – not having water and paying higher rates.

The government, he said,  will present the corrections in the contract but note that there is no guarantee that there will be no prosecution.

“Take it or leave it. That’s my advice to Manila Water and Maynilad Water Services.”

“Let me remind everyone, the only business of the government is to serve the people. And it is not negotiable. It is government’s responsibility to always safeguard and promote the welfare of our people.” (Stacy Ang/JGo/

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