Kadamay seeks Palace help in titling houses
CITY OF MALOLOS — Members of urban poor group Kalipunan ng Damayang Mahihirap (Kadamay) have turned to the Malacañang Action Center, submitting applications for titles for low-cost government houses they forcibly took on March 8 last year in Bulacan province.
They have been told about a Senate resolution that authorized the National Housing Authority (NHA) to reallocate houses awarded to policemen, soldiers, firemen and jail personnel.
Elsie Trinidad, NHA spokesperson, said a law was needed to redistribute 1,700 houses at housing sites in Pandi town in Bulacan, which had been allocated for uniformed personnel.
President Duterte had urged the military and the police to relinquish their claims in favor of the Kadamay families and avoid conflict. Kadamay members took over close to 6,000 houses in six NHA housing sites last year.
Senate Resolution No. 8 authorized the NHA to grant “to other qualified beneficiaries the unawarded housing units, awarded housing units that are not yet occupied and whose ownership and possession are surrendered by their respective awardees, and housing units whose respective awards were canceled [by] the Armed Forces of the Philippines, the Philippine National Police, the Bureau of Fire Protection, the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology and the Bureau of Corrections.”
Michael Beltran, Kadamay communication officer, said 900 homeless families from Manila, Caloocan and Quezon cities who were not Kadamay members had also submitted their housing applications to Malacañang.
“The state of homelessness should be declared a national humanitarian emergency. We are calling for the distribution of all idle houses in the country to the homeless as an immediate step toward addressing the housing crisis. It is criminal to let them rot away while our country has the most [number of] homeless in Asia,” Kadamay said.
On Monday in Pampanga province, members of the Metro Clark chapter of Kadamay from the cities of Mabalacat, Angeles and San Fernando submitted housing applications to the NHA Pampanga office.
Kadamay members have targeted idle units at San Fernando Ville in Angeles and Xevera subdivisions in Bacolor and Mabalacat.
Elvie Edona, Kadamay Metro Clark leader, said the group petitioned for free housing.
“NHA staffers accepted our applications. We don’t know the process that we should undergo to be able to get the units but it is certain that we shall be going back here to make noise until we are given the units,” Edona said.
Ines Gonzales, NHA Pampanga district officer in charge, said Kadamay applications would have to wait until the NHA completed its inventory of awarded and occupied units in housing projects for uniformed personnel.
The NHA extended the deadline for the inventory from Feb. 28 to March 2 to allow soldiers and policemen from the provinces to present proof of occupancy. —REPORTS FROM CARMELA REYES-ESTROPE AND TONETTE OREJAS
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