Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) chairman Romando Artes on Wednesday warned that the entire National Capital Region (NCR) will be submerged in flood if pumping stations are removed.
The MMDA chief made the remark after Senator Cynthia Villar refuted his statement that all the 71 pumping stations in Metro Manila are operating at 100 percent capacity.
Villar shared that a pumping station between Las Pi?as-Para?aque river is malfunctioning and causes flooding
“Ako, kini-question ko ‘yang idea ng pumping station kasi marami na ring nagsabi sa amin na sa Metro Manila, ang problem ‘yung pumping station ninyo, imbes na i-pump ang water out of the river, nakukuha ay basura and nagma-malfunction ang pumping station, hindi effective. So imbes na makatulong nakakasama pa,” Villar said.
“You have to study ‘yung sinasabi mo na you have very successful, napakaraming pumping station. I don’t think so kasi ‘yung pumping station namin hindi natakbo,” she added.
Out of all the rivers in Las Pi?as, the one with the pumping station is the only river that causes flooding in the area, Villar said.
Senate public works chairman Ramon Revilla Jr. then asked the MMDA chair if there are other solutions to flooding if they will remove the pumping stations.
“Lulubog po ang buong Metro Manila pag inalis po natin lahat ng pumping stations,” the MMDA chairman responded.
Artes also told the panel that there is no MMDA pumping station in the river that Villar is referring to.
“Baka kay Ninong Manny [Villar] ‘yan?” Revilla said in jest.
Villar insisted that there is a pumping station in the said river.
“Ano ako naloloka? Bakit ayaw niyo i-admit?” a visibly pissed Villar said.
The lawmaker immediately clarified that it might be operated by the MMDA or the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).
Still, Artes maintained that MMDA is not operating a pumping station in Las Pi?as and Para?aque river.
“I did not say you’re imagining but…wala po kaming ino-operate na pumping station insofar as Las Pi?as and Para?aque river is concerned,” he said.
Villar then told the DPWH to remove it.
“Ako na lang ang maglilinis ng river kasi nakaharang s’ya don. Lalong hindi malinis ang river. Ako ang sinisisi ng mga homeowner na wala raw akong ginagawa,” she said.
At the latter part of the hearing, senators were informed that what is installed in the Las Pinas river it is a booster pump which accelerates the velocity of water.–LDF, GMA Integrated News