MANILA - Two left-leaning groups and several customers filed on Monday a petition asking Manila Water to suspend basic charges for tens of thousands affected by a water supply shortage earlier this month.
The service outage affected some 1.2 million households in the east zone of Metro Manila, serviced by Ayala-led Manila Water. The west zone, under Maynilad Water Services Inc., is unaffected.
Consumers led by groups Bayan and Bayan Muna filed their 21-page petition at the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) in Old Balara, Quezon City.
The petitioners also sought compensation for businesses that were disrupted by the service disruption and consumers who were forced to buy water storage containers that saw price hikes.
The complaint also urged MWSS to review Manila Water's approved rate increase and hold public hearings with customers.
Senators and congressmen have said that they want the concessionaire penalized over the water shortage that hit parts of Metro Manila and Rizal province over the past few weeks.
Manila Water has attributed the problem to increased demand, lack of rains, delays in infrastructure projects supposed to boost supply, and the declining level of the La Mesa Dam, its emergency resource.
-- Report from Raya Capulong, ABS-CBN News