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The Auditing Commission (COA) announced that the Metropolitan Waterworks Sewerage System is advancing implementation of the highly controversial New Centennial Water Source Kaliwa Dam Project (NCWS KDP) without completing its application for required approvals from affected government organizations.

In the 2020 Annual Audit Report (AAR) for MWSS, COA warned of the Possibility of canceling the project from the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources kt issued Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC).

In its audit review of the project that promises to bring an additional 600 million liters of water per day to Metro Manila, COA found that the DENR issued ECC allows MWSS to use proceed with project implementation after obtaining “necessary approvals” from other relevant government agencies. “

The contract for the £ 12.2 billion project was awarded to China Energy Engineering Corp. (CEEC), which has reportedly started the first phase of construction despite complaints from indigenous peoples displaced as a result of the construction of the Kaliwa Dam.

State auditors said it is complying with environmental management requirements that MWSS and its contractors are complying with must include compliance with the requirements of the National Integrated Protected Areas Systems Act or Republic Act 11038; Necessary certifications from the National Commission for Indigenous Peoples and the identification of landfills for excavated material, among others.

“The ECC is a conditional certificate where MWSS must meet 21 conditions and 4 restrictions that are subject to the approval / assessment by DENR “COA explained.

The auditors warned:” The possible repeal of the ECC, if violations are justified, will affect the effectiveness of the loan agreement with China Eximbank and the trade agreement with CEEC. “

” We have recommended that the Engineering and Technical Group will obtain the necessary approvals required by the DENR for the implementation of the NCWS KDP and the submission of the compliance monitoring report along with the accompanying documents, ”stated COA.

The government agreed A $ 283.2 million loan from the Chinese bank to build the Kaliwa Dam, a flagship infrastructure project “Build, Build, Build” program by President Rodrigo Duterte.

Joan Jaime from Kalipunan ng mga Katutubong Mamamayan ng Pilipinas said in a media interview that the dam will destroy the way of life of indigenous peoples whose ancestral area has been designated as the site of the dam project became:

“All things get a monetary value and benefit from it. This is in contrast to the needs of the people, the needs of the indigenous communities and the idea that land should be used for the common good, ”said Jaime.

Ref: https://mb.com.ph