Public hearing to discuss basic sanitation in Ouro Preto was held at the ALMG auditorium this Tuesday (14) | Photo: Willian Dias / ALMG
The value of the water bill in Ouro Preto, in the Metropolitan Region of Belo Horizonte, and the quality of the water provided to the citizens of the municipality were topics of a public hearing in the Legislative Assembly of Minas Gerais (ALMG) this Tuesday (14).
In 2019, the Municipality of Ouro Preto granted the service of water supply and sewage collection and treatment for 35 years to the company Ouro Preto Serviços de Saneamento (Saneouro).
Before Saneuro, the service was provided by an autarchy linked to the city hall. A fixed rate was charged to the population. According to councilor Matheus Pacheco (PV), starting in October, when 90% of the city’s houses received individual hydrometers, Saneuro began charging proportionally to the consumption of each household.
“Since then we have been following an economic and social collapse in our city. We can categorically state that we have one of the most expensive tariffs in Brazil: 16 m³ is close to R$ 300”, said Ouro Preto councilor Matheus Pacheco (PV). “How can a family of two or three people pay such an exorbitant bill? The water bill is more expensive than Cemig’s”.
“The revolt of the population is not about paying the bill. We want to pay, but we want to pay a fair price and have the service done efficiently,” he said.
According to state deputy Leleco Pimentel (PT), the most voted in the city in the last election, the movement against Saneuro has the support of the entire population, “from the poorest to the owners of restaurants and inns”.
On Friday (10/03), the mayor of Ouro Preto, Angelo Oswaldo (PV), sent an extrajudicial notification to Saneuro, in which he asks for a reduction in the tariff and improvement of water quality. The contract with Saneuro was closed in the administration prior to his.
Oswaldo even signaled that the city may carry out an administrative intervention if the problems are not solved.
“I want to tell the mayor to intervene immediately, since another problem detected is that the company does not take water to all places in Ouro Preto. She chose the filet, which was profitable”, said Leleco.
“Report from the National Observatory on the Right to Water and Sanitation pointed out that there are total coliforms and fecal coliforms, in addition to metals, being served as a supply in Ouro Preto. Water is the Source of health, it is the Source of life. It cannot be contaminated as the first food to go into people’s mouths”, added the PT.
Saneuro did not send a representative to the public hearing at the ALMG. THE TIME sought the company through the press office and will update the text when there is a positioning.
The Municipality of Ouro Preto was also contacted, but has not yet taken a position.
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