Baciwa workers worry about pay


BACOLOD City — Amid the conflict among top officials of Bacolod City Water District (Baciwa), employees worry that they will not receive their salaries today.

The management crisis has made the water district workers anxious, said Claudio Salmo, president of the 274-strong Baciwa Employees Union.

General Manager Juliana Carbon had been preventively suspended by the Board of Directors.

Supposedly barred from Baciwa, Carbon stayed in her office since Aug. 1, a day after her suspension took effect, defying the Board’s order.

Carbon is the signatory of Baciwa’s bank accounts, but the Board told the banks not to accept transactions signed by Carbon since her suspension.

The situation may worsen if the employees do not receive their salaries today, Salmo said yesterday.

Salmo said he has spoken regarding the matter to Local Water Utilities Administration (LWUA) personnel, engineers Ed De Mayo and Eric Gita.

De Mayo and Gita went to Baciwa yesterday to investigate the water district’s problems.

They met with Carbon and the workers’ union officers, a Baciwa employee who requested anonymity said.

On Monday, Mayor Monico Puentevella wrote LWUA administrator Andres Ibarra asking for the agency’s takeover of Baciwa until the conflict between the management and the Board is resolved.

Puentevella said this will ensure that water district services are continuously provided to all concessionaires.

He also asked LWUA to “send a task force” that will investigate the conflict and “serve as a temporary management team [that will] oversee the operations of Baciwa.”

Salmo said the employees’ union has been conducting rallies at Baciwa from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. since Aug. 1.

Members of the Board were chair Lawrence Villanueva, vice chair Lorendo Dilag, secretary Marichi Ramos, and members Cecilia Henares and Maida Torre.

Voting for Carbon’s suspension were Villanueva, Dilag and Ramos, and against it were Henares and Torre./PN