The Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) Regulatory Office has issued a notice of service obligation failure to Maynilad for failing to meet its service obligations as indicated under the concession agreement.
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Maynilad may face fines over water interruptions
Louise Maureen Simeon (The Philippine Star) - May 22, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Maynilad Water Services Inc. may face penalties over the two-week supply interruption this month amid the quality of water in Laguna de Bay, an official said yesterday.

The Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) Regulatory Office has issued a notice of service obligation failure to Maynilad for failing to meet its service obligations as indicated under the concession agreement.

“We are giving them five days to issue an explanation as to why they should not be penalized under the agreement,” MWSS chief regulator Patrick Ty said in a briefing yesterday.

“They may be facing penalties which may be equivalent to rebates and the amount is dependent on the affected areas and the level of severity. We still have to check how many accounts were affected,” he added.

Last April 30, MWSS issued a letter to Maynilad to call its attention on the large number of complaints received regarding water service interruptions and low water pressure in large portions of the west zone.

“More than 15 days lapsed since MWSS alerted Maynilad of the complaints and water service interruptions and low water pressure still continued to affect the concession area,” Ty said.

If Maynilad is found liable, MWSS will recommend to the MWSS Board that fines and penalties should be imposed.

For its part, Maynilad said it has received the notice of service obligation failure in relation to the service interruption due to the algal bloom in Laguna Lake.

“We believe there is no basis for the imposition of the penalty, as the service interruption did not last for 15 days and only affected 12 percent of Maynilad’s customer base,” Maynilad spokesperson Jennifer Rufo said.

“To mitigate the impact of the emergency service interruption, we immediately implemented rotational supply interruptions and also deployed mobile water tankers and stationary water tanks, even as we intensified treatment interventions to address the challenging raw water quality,” she added.

Last month, Maynilad said portions of Parañaque, Las Piñas, Muntinlupa, and Cavite will experience low water pressure to no water supply until May 14.

This is equivalent to around 170,000 water service connections.

The unusual algae proliferation observed in Laguna Lake last April 23 is due to the warmer temperature brought about by the weak El Niño episode in the country, the firm said.

Maynilad explained that excessive algae required additional cleaning and de-clogging of Maynilad’s two Putatan water treatment facilities. – With Iris Gonzales

MAYNILAD WATER INTERRUPTIONS
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