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NAPC working double time to finalize housing settlement for North Triangle folk

PIA Press Release
Tuesday, October 11, 2011

MANILA, Oct. 11 (PIA) -- The National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC) on Tuesday said the government is working double time to finalize an agreement aimed at providing tenurial security for informal settlers of North Triangle in Quezon City.

NAPC Assistant Secretary Gina dela Cruz said an inter-agency technical working group (TWG) composed of the commission, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC) has been exploring ways to come up with a solution that is just, feasible and acceptable to all stakeholders.

“We in NAPC have been engaged in a series of talks with various informal settler organizations in North Triangle since October last year and especially when President Aquino called for the creation of a body in December tasked to craft a housing framework for the urban poor in light of the demolition that took place in the area and the many issues that concern the informal settler families,” dela Cruz said.

Some 4,000 to 5,000 families are facing demolition in North Triangle to make way for a P22-billion development project, which includes the entire 30-hectare Sitio San Roque in Barangay Bagong Pag-asa.

The project is a joint venture of the Ayala Land Inc. (ALI) and the National Housing Authority (NHA) to develop and transform North Triangle into a central business and commercial district. The NHA is the listed owner of this property.

The inter-agency task force has succeeded in getting the approval of President Benigno Aquino III to allocate P10 Billion in 2011 as part of the P38-billion proposed funding package for the resettlement of some 106,000 informal settler families living in danger zones such as esteros and floodways around the country. The amount will be used to construct low-cost housing in suburban and in-city resettlement areas.

For North Triangle, the President has given an additional P450 million for the construction of a medium-rise building in Camarin, Caloocan City intended to house some 1,500 families.

Dela Cruz said that NAPC, the DILG and the NHA have been working together with North Triangle informal settlers for an amicable settlement, including the possibilities for on-site, in-city or near-city relocation plan. The Commission on Human Rights has pitched in as well by providing guidelines for a rights-based approach to the resettlement of informal settlers.

“With these social processes underway, NAPC and the other members of the task force are confident that the problem is being handled carefully,” dela Cruz stressed.
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