Some 11 million families nationwide still don’t have access to potable water.
National Water Resource Board (NWRB) executive director Dr. Sevillo David Jr. said these families are forced to rely on “unprotected” deep wells, springs, rivers, lakes and rainwater for their household needs.
“Sa ngayon po Â‘no, halos mga 11 million pamilya pa ho briefing.
Government statistics showed that the Philippines has some 26.3 million families.
Lack of sanitation has also forced some families to defecate in the open, risking water contamination and diseases, David said.
Water supply also often becomes an issue during the dry season, he noted.
“We have enough water supply for now. But the PAGASA says El Niño is looming,” David said.
El Niño is characterized by below-normal rainfall conditions, which according to the state weather forecaster.
“We need to prepare for this as it could affect our water supply, particularly in our farms,” David said.
Asked what the government is doing to solve water issues, David cited President Ferdinand Marcos’ order to create a water resource management office.
“This office will be in charge of coordinating various government agencies which have water programs and activities. More than 13 agencies have a role or have a program on water and our President wants to have coordination to provide security and relief to the needs of our countrymen,” he said.