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Pay us properly, landowners ask gov’t

ILOILO CITY—Landowners and tenants of properties expropriated for development of the Kalibo International Airport (KIA) in Aklan province have appealed to the government to give them adequate compensation and assistance with their looming displacement.

At least 971 landowners and residents from six villages will be affected by the the P6-billion airport development project that involves the expansion of the runway width from 100 meters to 300 meters. These
are the villages of Pook, Nalook, Caano, Estancia, Tigayon in the capital town of Kalibo and Puis village in the neighboring town of New Washington.

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Runway extension

The runway will also be extended from 2.2 km to 2.5 km. The project also includes that construction of a new terminal building and additional roads and apron space.

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Last week, at least 200 landowners and tenants, who comprised the Nalook, Pook, Caano Association (Napocacia), assembled near the KIA and marched to Crossing Banga and to the provincial capitol to press their demand for compensation.

They carried placards calling on the Aklan provincial government, the Department of Transportation and the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines to hold a dialogue with affected tenants and landowners, compensate tenants, and provide a resettlement and livelihood program to affected farmers.

Right of way

“They said they would only pay the landowners. But how about the tenants who would lose their livelihood?” said German Baltazar, Napocacia vice president.

At least 142 hectares of land, including agricultural areas, will be expropriated for the airport expansion project.

In an earlier interview, provincial administrator Selwyn Ibaretta, chair of the provincial government’s committee on right of way acquisition, said only the villages of Pook, Nalook Tigayon and Estancia would be affected.

He said landowners accepted the compensation offer of the provincial government.

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According to Ibaretta, the provincial government cannot provide tenants resettlement or relocation because the properties are owned by private individuals from whom the tenants are renting.

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TAGS: Aklan, Kalibo International Airport, Kia, news, Regions
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