Biazon almost hit by falling debris in housing project for Zamboanga siege victims
ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines – “Sonamagan!”
This was what Muntinlupa Representative Rodolfo Biazon exclaimed, after bits of concrete and hollow blocks nearly hit him during Wednesday’s inspection at a housing project for residents displaced by the Zamboanga City siege in 2013.
Biazon and three other lawmakers came to this city to investigate reports the construction of the housing projects was substandard.
When they visited the project for the Lustre Homeowners Subdivision in Barangay Sta. Catalina, Biazon lightly struck a portion of a wall of a housing unit. His hand went through.
In another attempt, the portion of the wall gave in but smashed and falling pieces of hollow blocks nearly hit him in the arm.
“I did not only see, I felt it,” he told reporters when asked if the housing units were indeed substandard.
Biazon, chair of the Joint Congressional Oversight Committee on Risk Reduction and Management, said it would be up to the National Housing Authority to do something to correct the defects in the construction process.
“I would suggest that you do this early enough so hindi na ma-continue (so that substandard processes will stop),” Biazon said, referring to measures to be implemented by the Contractor to ensure the durability of the units.
Biazon also asked Al Indanan, NHA Western Mindanao chief, to also do something about the housing on stilts that were being built for the Badjaos.
“The next time you construct the housing on stilts, I might be around again. Baka mamaya, kapag lumakad ako sa sahig ng houses on stilts malunod ako sa ibaba (I might fall and drown when I walk on the floor of one of the houses on stilts),” Biazon said.
Indanan said the contractor of the Lustre housing project was Bilrey Construction, which has also been implementing a similar project under the Zamboanga City Roadmap to Recovery and Reconstruction (Z3R) program.
On Monday, Mayor Maria Isabelle Climaco-Salazar ordered a halt in the construction of the Lustre project after the wall of one of the units collapsed.
Assistant City Administrator Elmeir Apolinario said the mayor also ordered an investigation into reports of alleged use of substandard materials by the builders of the contractors on the housing units.
But early on Indanan denied reports of substandard materials being used.
He said the collapse of the wall came after a backhoe accidentally hit it.