Isla Cupa residents soon to get land titles

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Thursday, June 12, 2014


RESIDENTS at Isla Cupa in Barangay Consolacion may soon have their land titles from the Registry of Deeds under the Urban Poor Emancipation Program (Upep) of the government.

One of those residents, Robert Bolong, who has been living in Isla Cupa since he was eight, applied for the program when he first heard it in 2000.

“The help it could give to me and my family is a great one. Imagine, only one peso will be paid to the government for the title that we will get. However, almost 13 years have passed, I still haven’t received the title yet,” Bolong, former Consolacion barangay chair, said.

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In an interview with Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro, Bolong said that his concerns are also the same that of his neighbors.

“I even doubted that maybe the program is illegal since there was really no title distributed to us,” he added.

The ‘Piso-Piso’ program, the brainchild former city mayor Vicente Emano, was created to help the landless gain land titles by paying only one peso to the local government.

Isla Cupa is one of the many areas that applied for it when the Piso-Piso was first launched in 2000.

According to Cagayan de Oro city information office blogsite at wordpress.com, the Piso-Piso, formally known as the Comprehensive Socialized Housing Program for the underprivileged and homeless citizens of the city, centered around the 67-hectare off-site resettlement in Calaanan, Canitoan, one of the first sites where the program was implemented.

Not the same occupants

The City Planning and Development Office (CPDO) is currently evaluating and verifying if the awardees of the program and the actual occupants of the land are the same.

Flores Sabuga-a, officer in charge of the city’s Estate Management Division, said that there are really cases that the awardees and the occupants are not the same, prompting their office to do a re-profiling.
“I have heard that there are cases when the awardees or the beneficiaries will sell their land. According to the ordinance, this is already a violation. Anybody who is caught doing this will definitely be disqualified from the program. There will be no titles given to them and the government will also retrieve the land immediately,” Sabuga-a said.

Individuals who will apply for the program will be given only three months to build a house on the lot they are to occupy.

She added that many were not able to ‘endure’ since they could not construct a house immediately.

“Some will just plant, some will build houses wherein the owners are nowhere to be found. Some of the owners are even dead so they might have given the house and lot to their heirs. They are the ones we are evaluating,” she said.

There are 35 project areas in which CPDO has been evaluating including barangays Bugo, Lapasan, Gusa, Cugman, Balubal, Macabalan, Puntod, Consolacion, Camaman-an, Macasandig, Kauswagan, Bonbon, Macanhan, Carmen, Canitoan and Iponan.

Isla Cupa, once approved, will be considered as the pilot area of the program.

Sabuga-a also said that during Sendong tragedy in 2011, “everyone was focused in giving immediate shelters for the victims so people under the program may have felt neglected in giving attention to their problem. But now, with one pilot, the rest will definitely follow.”

She also disclosed that in the future, once the residents of the 35 project areas given titles, they will also look into giving titles to the Sendong survivors who are relocated in some of the areas in the city, as well.

Currently, CPDO issued a letter to the Registry of Deeds for the fast tracking of Isla Cupa’s land applicants.

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on June 12, 2014.

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