(Eagle News)– The Supreme Court has ordered Manila Water, Maynilad and the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System to pay massive fines for violating the Philippine Clean Water Act.
SC spokesperson Brian Hosaka said this was after the SC, in a decision penned by J. Ramon Paul L. Hernando and with a vote of 14-0, denied their petitions and affirmed the decisions of the Court of Appeals that found they violated Section 8 of the law.
The provision on domestic sewage collection, treatment and disposal states the “agency vested to provide water supply and sewerage facilities and/or concessionaires in Metro Manila and other highly urbanized cities (HUCs) as defined in Republic Act No. 7160, in coordination with LGUs, shall be required to connect the existing sewage line found in all subdivisions, condominiums, commercial centers, hotels, sports and recreational facilities, hospitals, market places, public buildings, industrial complex and other similar establishments including households to available sewerage system.”
According to Hosaka, Maynilad “shall be jointly and severally liable with the MWSS for a total amount of P921,464,184 covering the period 05/07/09 to date of promulgation.”
Manila Water Co. Inc shall also be jointly liable with MWSS for the same amount and period, he said.
According to Hosaka, they shall “pay the fine within 15 days from receipt of the decision.”
From receipt of the decision until they have fully paid the amount, Hosaka said they “shall be fined the initial amount of P322,102.00/day subject to further 10% increase every two years as provided under Sec. 28 of the Phil Clean Water Act, until full compliance with Sec 8 of the same law.”
He said a “legal interest of 6% per annum” shall apply until fully satisfied.
The decision stems from cases filed by the government reportedly during the time of then-President Gloria Arroyo.