NOTE: This story was first published in The Bohol Chronicle’s Sunday print edition.
Aid for local waterworks service at P1 million for each of Bohol’s 47 towns is one of Gov. Arthur Yap’s essential programs for delivery in the coming weeks.
Access to clean and safe drinking water pursues one of the three governance pillars of the capitol leadership which is the care for the weak.
For one, Cortes Mayor Lynn Iven Lim welcomed the provincial support which he said would help improve his town’s existing waterworks system.
He told the media on Friday the P1 million assistance from the provincial government is useful in addition to the town’s allocation for the on-going improvement costing up to P5 million.
As a policy aligned with the auditing rule, municipal local government units (LGUs) that have no previous unliquidated provincial financial assistance will first get the new aid.
In other words, other LGUs have yet to liquidate before their P1 million assistance will be released.
Water was one of the absent or lacking basic needs raised by remote upland and island settlers to Yap during his gubernatorial campaign.
One of Yap’s currently working “care for the weak” strategies is the mapping of waterless barangays for the identification of best-suited interventions.
About 22% of the province’s 1,109 barangays have accordingly been identified—and the count is running.
Many of these “thirsty” areas are reportedly concentrated in the Second District, where no or less access to water contributes to the indicators of high poverty incidence based on national data.
There are similar areas in the two other districts, plus those in which existing water supply systems necessitate upgrading.
The water source mapping ordered by Yap also intends to provide drip irrigation facilities, especially to potentially productive agricultural areas but which are not reached by irrigation services.
In a large scale, capitol has eyed to develop Loctob spring in Loboc for added surface water bulk supply to Tagbilaran City and six nearby towns in pursuit of sustainable resources policy.
Groundwater sourcing is discouraged to avoid saltwater intrusion and surface water will be tapped because it is abundant, reliable, and economically viable to invest.
Surface water sources include spring, rivers and falls. (Ven rebo Arigo)