Three Mindanao regions lag behind in potable water sources

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 2 July) – Three regions in Mindanao recorded the most number of households who have least access to better sources of potable water, the 2017 National Demographic and Health Survey of Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) showed.

A boy fetches water from a communal water source in a village in T’boli town, South Cotabato. MindaNews file photo by H. MARCOS C. MORDENO

A report released by PSA Davao last June 30 said the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) had the least improved water sources among the country’s 17 regions at 70.9% while Zamboanga Peninsula (90.8%) and Davao Region (91.8%) ranked 15th and 13th, respectively.

The Cordillera Administrative Region (84.6%) was at 16th and Bicol Region (91.3%) at 14th. The most improved was National Capital Region at 99.5%, the report said.

The survey added at least 95% percent of households in the country used an improved source of drinking water.

But more urban households (98%) enjoyed access to such source compared to rural households (93%).

The PSA said the most common source of drinking water was bottled water or water from a refilling station (44%), followed by water piped into the dwelling, yard or plot (24%), and water from a tubewell or borehole (12%).

Overall, it said that 8 in every 10 Filipino households had water in the premises, 16% of households traveled less than 30 minutes or longer to fetch water, and 3% percent traveled 30 minutes or longer.

The agency said 79% of the households reported that they did not treat their water prior to drinking. It highlighted the need for improved sources of water to prevent contamination.

The ARMM was also the least improved at 35.4% in terms of toilet facilities nationwide, followed by Davao Region (67.8%) and Region 12 (68.6%) while the most improved was Central Luzon at 87%. (Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)