'Speculation,' says Villar on Prime Water allegedly eyeing Metro

Sherrie Ann Torres, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 13 2019 03:24 PM | Updated as of Dec 13 2019 10:12 PM

MANILA - Senator Cynthia Villar dismissed as "speculation" reports that her family's Prime Water Infrastructure was eyeing the Philippine capital, where the two distributors are under fire.

Prime Water is focused on the provinces and is "very far (malayong-malayo)" from Metro Manila, Villar said.

The concession agreements with Manila Water Co and Maynilad Water Services Inc will expire in 2022 after the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System revoked its earlier decision to extend the deals.

"We never talked about it. Speculation yun," the senator said after reporters noted that the President officiated the opening of the Villar family's new events venue.

“We (Prime Water) are in the provinces. Malayong-malayo kami sa Metro Manila," Villar said, noting that the family-run company does not have sufficient facilities in the capital region.

Prime Water has been the water provider of Camella Homes for 4 decades before it expanded its services to provincial communities.

“Maski na hindi pa sila mabigyan ng franchise, yung facilities nila you cannot get that... so bibilhin mo yung kumpanya if ever,” she said.

(Even if they don't renew their franchise, you cannot just get their facilities. You will need to buy the company if ever.)

The clan's patriarch, former Senator Manuel Villar controls the Nacionalista Party, the second largest voting bloc in the House of Representatives, next to Duterte's ruling PDP-Laban.

The Villar couple's son Mark is Duterte's Public Works secretary, while their daughter Camille is incumbent Las Piñas representative.