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Alexis R.


July 25,

Sabotage, corruption derailing

Butuan City water project
Written by Tribune Wires
Saturday, 31 January 2015 00:00

The water extraction system of the Butuan City Water District (BCWD) in Taguibo
River may have been sabotaged, thereby exacerbating the effect of typhoon
Seniang in December last year and resulting in the present water shortage by 40
percent BCWDs production output.
This possibility surfaced after engineers of BCWD discovered that the steel cover of
its manhole No.4 in the river was missing, allowing sand and other debris to
penetrate the infiltration gallery, thereby clogging the passage of water toward the
main transmission pipeline.
BCWD spokesman Ramil Barquin said the possibility that the steel cover was
intentionally removed to worsen the effects of Seniang on their facility cannot be
discounted because it was unlikely that high currents in the river could dislodge the
heavy cover.
The infiltration gallery is a network of perforated pipes located five meters below
the river. It is used to collect the water through intervening sand and gravel filters
going to the main transmission line. BCWD closes the gallery during heavy rains,
thus the removal of the steel cover had very serious negative effects as debris
entered the system, said Barquin.
As to who would have the motives to sabotage BCWDs facility, several sources in
Butuan have said that no less than top city local officials had been allegedly
interested in BCWD projects, including BCWDs Private-Public Partnership (PPP)
P565-million Bulk Water Supply and Water Treatment Project awarded to and wholly
financed by Taguibo Aquatech Solutions Corp.
The sources also said local city officials had allegedly tried to exert pressure for the
award of the project to the firm, Abejo Waters of Cebu, in spite of its failure to
comply with the basic requirements set for the Public-Private Partnership (PPP)
Other local city officials even brought in Korean investors while another councilor
who participated in the bidding of other BCWD projects have banded together in
attacking BCWDs latest PPP project.

The top local city officials were also seen allegedly influencing the Sangguniang
Panglungsod into opposing the project, while an agency under the city government
through its Environmental and Natural Resources Office issued an inaccurate
report that delayed but did not stop the project proponents from securing an
Environmental Clearance Certificate (ECC).
Source: (
One of the major problems in Butuan City is the supply of water. Most of the
residence experienced this problem. Most of the time, shutdown of water in the
faucets will occur during the time when there is a rain. It has been said that the
reason behind is that water in the taguibo watershed, the source of water in Butuan,
will be contaminated with sand if there occurs a heavy rain. But shutting down the
water will cause another problem on the people residing therein. People will always
blame the BCWD for the weak service. In fact, the problem has been experienced
almost a year or more but the local government of Butuan is not doing something
for it.
Based on this article, BCWD thought that there were people who destroyed
intentionally the filterer of the river in the watershed. Whatever the cause, it is still
the responsibility of the government and the persons involved in its administration
must be accountable. There must always be an urgent action to every problem that
might be encountered. Blaming someone will not be helpful and that is the problem
of our country nowadays that is blaming other persons without doing something.
Every people in Butuan whether officers of BCWD or not must do something to solve
this problem even just a little way like conserving water and other things that might
be helpful. Also the government must always be active and always ready to solve
problems in order to prevent harmful effects to our society since the power and
authority is in their hands.