THE CITY Government of Davao and Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) approved the Masterplan Study on Comprehensive Wastewater Management in Davao City after signing the records of discussion for the project at the Arcadia Activity Center on Sept. 12.
The signing was led by Mayor Sebastian Duterte and JICA chief representative Sakamoto Takema. Consulate-General of Japan in Davao Ishikawa Yoshihisa, with delegates from JICA and the Japan embassy, Davao City Water District (DCWD) executives, city councilors, and other public officials also witnessed the event.
The mayor assured the full support for the study as this marks the first step in ensuring adequate water supply to the city’s growing population while mitigating pollution in the surrounding waters.
“Given the beneficial impact that comprehensive wastewater management presents to our community, it is only right that we unify our efforts in establishing an effective network to execute the vital steps of data collection, evaluation, and analysis of the current situation,” Duterte said.
Takema also stressed that clean water is “very crucial to the economy.”
“It is where sustainable food production, exports, and tourism depend on. Through this study, JICA assures you that we are with you on crafting the best approach to wastewater management,” he added.
Engr. Ivan Cortez, head of the City Planning and Development Office, said the study will identify the precise needs for the project’s implementation, as well as the roles and responsibilities of the various agencies and service providers.
“We will expect a lot of meetings and coordination with a lot of agencies including the Water District, including the barangays involved,” Cortez said.
Cortez said even though the long-term plan calls for a centralized sewage system in the city, the DCWD’s septage management program, which is presently being developed and will offer septic dislodging and collection services in residential areas, will still be implemented.
The study is expected to begin this year. It will be conducted by a third-party firm chosen and funded by JICA, with a three-year timeline consisting of “wastewater management planning, feasibility study for priority projects, and capacity development, among others.”
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