Urban poor group leaders call on government to stop demolition without proper relocation

Urban poor group leaders call on government to stop demolition without proper relocation

ABOUT 50 leaders of urban poor groups and civic organizations called on the government to stop its supposedly unabated demolition without proper relocation and "anti-poor" housing schemes.

On Monday, September 11, 2023, a group of individuals from the Sanlakas, Akbayan, Partido Laban sa Masa, and Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP), among other people groups, went to the Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DSHUD) Central Office and Region 7 office in Lopez Jaena Street in Barangay Subangdaku, Mandaue City to express their opinions.

Sanlakas Cebu Secretary Teody Navea told the media on Monday that while they support the administration's effort for urban poor housing, it must be affordable for even the poorest of the poor sectors.

President "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. declared earlier in March that he had ordered DSHUD to build at least a million housing units annually in order to reduce the nation's about six million housing backlog.

The government's plan to construct vertical (condominium-style) dwelling units, according to Navea, may cause an additional burden on the recipients, especially those earning below minimum wage.

"They have housing to start with, but the cost to build vertical 15 to 20 stories is expensive. Only those with regular income can subsidize or become this project's beneficiaries," Navea said in a mixed Cebuano and English.

"The condominium is middle class. Who is poor enough to pay for an elevator? Who is poor enough to pay for your security guard? Aside from paying for the units, you pay for the maintenance,” she added.

Navea and their group also called the government to ensure that families living within the river’s three-meter easement zone who will be affected by the clearing operations will be given temporary shelters and or rental subsidies in order to meet their daily needs.

SunStar Cebu tried to get in touch with the DSHUD 7 but they declined to give a statement on the matter.

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