5 ‘new members’ for MCWD board

CEBU City Mayor Edgardo Labella appointed on Monday, January 6, 2020, five new members of the board of directors of the Metropolitan Cebu Water District (MCWD).

Labella sacked the old members of the MCWD board, majority of them appointed by former mayor Tomas Osmeña, citing their failure to provide solutions to address the water crisis in Cebu.

The new members of the board are former Cebu City councilor Jose Daluz III, Francisco “Frank” Malilong Jr., former Cebu City mayor Alvin Garcia, Manolette Dinsay and Miguelito “Mike” Pato.

Daluz, who heads the South Road Properties Management Office, replaced Cecilia Adlawan to represent the professional sector. His term started last Monday and will end on December 31, 2024.

Malilong, a SunStar Cebu columnist, replaced Joel Mari Yu, chairman of the old board and representative of the education sector. His term will end on December 31, 2022.

Garcia replaced Procopio Fernandez to represent the women sector. His term will last until the end of December 2020. Fernandez was the only member of the old board not appointed by Osmeña.

Daluz, Malilong and Garcia are also lawyers.

Dinsay, the former chief legal counsel of Governor Gwendolyn Garcia, replaced Ralph Sevilla to represent the civic sector. Dinsay’s term will end on December 31, 2022.

Pato, a businessman, was endorsed by the Mandaue Chamber of Commerce and Industry. He will represent the business sector, replacing former Cebu City councilor Augustus Pe Jr. Pato’s term will end on December 31, 2024.

Labella said members of the old board failed to provide any solution to the water crisis that the public repeatedly complained about.

Daluz in an interview with SunStar Cebu said they already submitted a copy of their appointments to the MCWD management.

Charmaine Kara, MCWD public information officer, said they endorsed the appointments of the new board members to the Local Water Utilities Administration (LWUA).

Daluz said once LWUA acting administrator Jeci Lapus approves their appointments, they will convene a new presiding officer and chairman of the board.

Daluz said that based on the directive of Labella, the board has to provide solutions to Cebu’s water crisis.

He said that based on MCWD data, the water district needs 260 million liters of water daily to supply its customers.

The new board is looking into the construction of a desalination plant and a dam, Daluz said.

“The mayor wants desalination plants to be constructed in Metro Cebu. These will help as a short-term solution to providing additional supply of water. He also wants small dams and big dams to be put up like in the Mananga River because Cebu has a lot of waterfalls and springs as long-term solutions,” Daluz said in a mix of Cebuano and English.

Daluz said they will visit the other local government units that are serviced by MCWD to listen to their ideas and suggestions to solve Cebu’s water crisis.

The former councilor assured that households not yet serviced by MCWD will soon have water connections. The MCWD will also conduct an inventory on water pipes to cut water wastage due to leaking pipes.

The MCWD is a government-owned and -controlled corporation that supplies water to 193,000 consumers in Metro Cebu. (PAC/MBG)