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MANILA, Philippines – San Juan City Mayor Francis Zamora on Friday, May 5, announced that the annual tradition of water dousing for the Wattah Wattah festival of 2023 due to the upcoming El Niño season.
“Although wala pa naman po tayo sa water crisis, ngunit kailangan po nating paghandaan ito. Kinakailangan po natin magsimula ngayon pa lamang sa paggawa ng mga hakbang upang ma-conserve ang water supply natin,” Zamora said.
(Although there’s still no water crisis, we have to prepare. We need to start now with taking steps to conserve our water supply.)
Instead of the tradition of dousing water, the statue of St. John the Baptist will be displayed in a procession around the streets of San Juan from 7 am onwards on June 24, Saturday. This will be followed by a Holy Mass at 6 pm at St. John the Baptist Parish.
The mayor encouraged the public to commemorate the feast day by praying and viewing the procession of the saint.
In an executive order, Zamora said that the city of San Juan is one with the whole country in its efforts to conserve water, mitigate the impending effects of El Niño, and avert a full water crisis that will affect the different parts of the country.
In 2019, San Juan used less water during the festival due to a water shortage crisis that affected several parts of Metro Manila.
On Tuesday, May 2, PAGASA upgraded its warning status from El Niño Watch to El Niño Alert. It said that the weather phenomenon may persist until the first quarter of 2024. – Rappler.com