Arroyo requests P350M for urban poor housing in QC compound
MANILA, Philippines — Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has asked the Senate-House conference on the 2019 national budget to provide P350 million for the acquisition of land titles of more than 8,000 urban poor families at the National Government Center (NGC) compound in Quezon City.
At the continuation of the oversight committee on urban poor housing’s meeting on Thursday, the Pampanga congresswoman said she had written a letter to the bicameral conference co-chaired by Senator Loren Legarda and Camarines Sur Rep. Rolando Andaya Jr. She asked that the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) be given P350 million for the land acquisition and reblocking of the NGC in Brgy. Holy Spirit.
“To help the effort out, I also wrote a letter in behalf of the Oversight Committee that I am joining you in requesting them for P350 million which is the amount that (Quezon City Councilor) Rannie (Ludovica) said to include in the Bicam but that’s just to give support because you said you could swing it but that’s for the Bicam,” she said.
The lawmaker originally asked for P100 million but upon the request of residents and in light of the number of beneficiaries and areas to be reblocked, she said the DPWH would need some P350 million.
Thousands of urban poor families in the said area were awarded by then President Arroyo their own land as a result of Republic Act No. 9207 or the National Government Center Housing and Land Utilization Act of 2003.
While most of the families in the village had already been awarded their own land titles, Arroyo said some problems still exist particularly claims of land-grabbing and failure in the reblocking of some properties.
This, she said, prompted her to activate the congressional oversight committee on urban poor housing.
In the same hearing, the DPWH said it has more than P100 million available funds but was unable to utilize it because lot owners failed to submit the necessary documents. Arroyo then asked DPWH and the National Housing Authority to finalize their list of private lot owners and qualified beneficiaries.
Earlier, Arroyo also asked the bicam to increase the budget of the Department of Agriculture by P20 billion to help lower the rate of inflation. /je
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