National budget, not concessionaires, should fund MWSS: House leader

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 20 2019 11:31 AM

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MANILA - The Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System's (MWSS) budget should be sourced directly from the national budget and not from the concessionaires it regulates, a House leader said Wednesday.

Under the current setup, water providers Maynilad and Manila Water shoulder the MWSS's operational expenses as they are required to pay the regulator P400 million each per year.

"We have been suggesting that the MWSS budget should come from the GAA (General Appropriations Act)," House Minority Leader Danilo Suarez said during the House Committee on Public Accounts hearing.

"The regulator is being paid by the regulatee. We're not saying na nagkakaroon ng bias dito sa arrangement na ito pero para mawala na 'yung sinasabi natin na MWSS is soft on their stance dahil itong MWSS ang kanilang nireregulate ang nagpapasuweldo sa kanila," he said.

(We're not saying that there is bias under this arrangement but we want to do away with comments that the MWSS is soft of their stance because their salaries come from their regulatees.)

Senators earlier scolded the MWSS for its "incompetence" amid the water crisis that left tens of thousands Metro Manila residents without water services for days.