MANILA, Philippines – The water elevation at Angat Dam is expected to breach the critical level of 160 meters on Saturday, the National Water Resources Board (NWRB) said Friday.
Based on the monitoring of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa), as of 6 a.m., the water level at Angat dam is at 160.28 meters down from Thursday’s 160.73 meters.
NWRB Executive Director Sevillo David Jr. said they expect the water level at Angat dam to reach the critical mark by Friday night or Saturday morning.
If the level drops below 160 meters, David said, this would mean further reduction of water allocation from the current 40 cubic meters per second (cms).
The NWRB earlier said that if the critical level is reached, the allocation for the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) will be adjusted again to give way to the shutting down of the auxiliary unit.
MANILA, Philippines – Teachers and professors in Metro Manila are opposing the proposed police and military presence in campuses across the country.
According to University of the Philippines (UP) Chancellor Mike Tan, the alleged militarization of educational institutions in the country may impact the students’ freedom of speech and may induce fear among schools.
Tan said, however, that the military and police may still decide to do some lecturing or organize fora inside campuses even in UP.
“Hahanap lang sila ng co-sponsor sa isang organisasyon ng UP, (They just need a co-sponsor from UP organizations),” Tan said.
Still, this cannot be used as avenue for government troops and police to remain inside school premises, he said.
This may lead to abuse, according to Tan, not only against students but against teachers and professors.
He cited the case of Leonardo Co, a University of the Philippines botanist who was killed in a crossfire between government troops and communist rebels in 2010.
“Medyo nakaka-disturb na bakit laging kung may UP students sa labas, ilang accounts na ang nabanggit kanina. Si Leonard Co na pinatay nga na siya ay isang professor namin. Sa Palanan[town], mga botanists na nagreresearch, mga math professors na nasa math na tutulungan ang mga teachers, hinarass din sila,” Tan argued.
(It’s quite disturbing why UP students are usually being involved. There had been several accounts cited. One of our professors here, Leonard Co, was killed. Botanists in Palanan who were doing research, math professors who were assisting the teachers, were harassed.)
“Kung kaya nilang gawin ito what more kung nakapasok sila sa campuses namin. That is our fear. Yan ang tinatawag naming militarization, (If they can do this, what more if they enter our campuses. That is our fear. That’s militarization,)” he added.
Dr. Danilo Arao, meanwhile, argued that students become activists because of their critical thinking, awareness of the issues and because they want to exercise their freedom of speech.
“They are just using the label of communism as a convenient excuse to quell whatever critical thinking people may have here in this university as well as in other universities,” the professor said.
The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), for its part, said they are not against student activism.
DILG Spokesperson Jonathan Malaya argued that the government is just being serious in curbing the recruitment of students or minors to join the communist CPP-NPA-NDF’s armed wing.
Nevertheless, the UP Chancellor assured that they are monitoring movements and activities of school organizations in their respective universities and they are willing to cooperate with authorities whenever necessary. – MNP (with reports from Vincent Arboleda)
MANILA, Philippines – The Maynilad Water Services has announced a schedule of temporary water service interruptions in parts of Metro Manila from August 20 (Tuesday) to August 21 (Wednesday).
In an advisory, Maynilad said the water service disruption slated from August 20 at 6 p.m. to August 21 at 6 a.m. will affect several areas of Manila, Caloocan, Malabon, and Navotas.
The west zone water concessionaire said the service interruption is due to maintenance activities aimed at improving water services.
Below is the list of affected barangays and their corresponding supply interruption schedules:
Barangay 124 to 127
Barangay 129 to 146
Dalagang Bukid East/C3
Barangay North Bay Blvd.
San Rafael Village
Maynilad urged its customers to store water at least three days before the scheduled interruption to prevent simultaneous heavy withdrawals of water from its pipelines, which can reduce water pressure and cause some customers to have no water earlier than scheduled.
The water concessionaire assured water tankers will be on standby to deliver water to affected areas as needed.
Upon resumption of water service, customers are also advised to let the water flow out for a few seconds until the water clears.
MANILA, Philippines – State weather service PAGASA has declared the end of weak El Niño which has started in the last quarter of 2018.
This means that the temperature in the Pacific Ocean has returned to normal and will remain so until the end of 2019.
During the past three to five months, areas of Oriental Mindoro and Sultan Kudarat experienced less rainfall.
But this August, PAGASA expects normal rainfall level in areas of Calabarzon, MIMAROPA, Bicol Region, Metro Manila, most parts of Eastern Visayas, and the provinces of Nueva Viscaya, Quirino, Bataan, Aurora, Agusan Del Norte, and Surigao Del Norte.
The El Niño has incurred P7.963-B worth of damage in agriculture across the country, according to data from the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) in JUNE 27, 2019.
This is apart from other problems such as the water crisis that hit Metro Manila when the level of water reserve in Angat Dam dipped below the minimum operating level of 180 meters.
For now, the dam’s supply is gradually recovering as it hit 177.12 meters at 6:00 a.m. today (August 16).
With this development, the National Water Resources Board (NWRB) may soon increase water allocation in Metro Manila to 40 cubic meters per second from the current 36 cubic meters per second, according to the agency’s Executive Director Sevillo David. – MNP (with details from Rey Pelayo)
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