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Manila prays for rain

MANILA (UCAN): “We ask the Lord to hasten to send the rain we badly need ... so that damage to crops and other livelihoods and an impending water shortage may be averted,” Luis Cardinal Tagle of Manila, said as he called on people to pray for rain as about 6.8 million people in the Philippine capital and nearby areas began to feel the effects of a water shortage in mid-March.
 
Supplies will be cut for several hours per day until the rainy season fills dams and reservoirs in May or June, a spokesperson for utility firm, Manila Water, has said.The company blamed an acute dry season and increased demand for water for the shortage.
 
In several areas of the capital, long lines of residents carrying buckets and basins formed outside water stations or on street corners for fire trucks that distribute water.
 
“We are currently facing a water crisis,” said Cardinal Tagle, adding that experts have reported that the country was experiencing a mild El Niño.
 
“Our relief will come from nature and so we implore the Master of all creation, God, our Father, at whose command the winds and seas obey, to send us rain,” said the the cardinal.
 
In a circular released this week and addressed to the clergy and religious communities in Manila Archdiocese, Cardinal Tagle urged people to “storm heavens with our supplication that God’s mercy be upon us and send us the rain we need.”
 
On March 15, Philippine president, Rodrigo Duterte, ordered private utility companies to release water from a dam in the northern part of the country to supply water to the capital for the next 150 days.
 
The country’s House of Representatives is set to discuss the ongoing water crisis and find possible solutions to it.
 
“We need to get a clear picture of the situation and how we’re going to deal with it because a lot of people are already being adversely affected by the problem,” said representative, Winston Castelo, of the House Committee on Metro Manila development.

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