The free, prior, and informed process in obtaining the Indigenous Peoples consent for the SRDP was initiated by MWSS as early as 2006. Multiple complex issues on royalty and profit sharing, elders’ decision and consent were challenged by rival tribal organizations, and the accreditation of the legitimate and functioning IP organizations representing the Indigenous Peoples/Indigenous Cultural Communities (IP/ICCs), were some of the political dynamics that MWSS overcame in good faith to obtain the CP for the project.
Following a series of assemblies and consultations, the IPs/ICCs in 2015, agreed to sign the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with MWSS and its Concessionaires, Maynilad and Manila Water, and the National Commission for Indigenous Peoples. However, it was not until November 2019 that an Indigenous Peoples Organization (IPO) was registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Php 20 million community royalty development plan funded by the MWSS Concessionaires was remitted on 19 November 2019, immediately after the NCIP formally recognized the IPO. On 1 August 2020, the NCIP Commission en banc approved the issuance of the CP that essentially validates the legality of the FPIC process and ratifies the MOA between the legitimate IPO. The culmination of the free, prior and informed consent process with the Dumagat-Remontado tribes living in the ancestral domains of Barangay Umiray, Municipality of General Nakar, Sitios Singawan and Malakawayan of Barangay Umiray, Municipality of Dingalan, all in the Province of Quezon was achieved when in 10 May 2021, during a hybrid ceremony (virtual and face-to-face), MWSS, Maynilad and Manila Water, received from the NCIP the CP.
The CP for SRDP not only attests to MWSS’ compliance to the Free, Prior and Informed Consent Process as prescribed under the Republic Act No. 8371 Indigenous Peoples Rights Act (IPRA) of 1997 and NCIP Administrative Order No. 03 series of 2012, but also manifests its corporate policy in the delivery of its water security projects. MWSS is motivated not only by legal compliance, but also by promoting long-term sustainability through service to a social purpose and genuine concern for the environmental and social impacts of its activities in the communities in which it operates.
The SRDP, which was originally part of the Umiray-Angat Transbasin facilities, will connect to the existing 13.14-kilometer transbasin tunnel from the Umiray inlet to Macua outlet. It will add 188 million liters of water per day to the Angat Reservoir’s storage for domestic use by customers in Metro Manila and neighboring cities and municipalities in Rizal, Cavite, and Bulacan Provinces.