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UDHA an effective law for housing - Binay

By Jose Rodel Clapano (The Philippine Star) Updated March 25, 2012 12:00 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Vice President Jejomar Binay said yesterday that Republic Act (RA) 7279 or the Urban Development and Housing Act (UDHA) of 1992 is an effective tool of the government to provide security and housing tenure for the poor.

Binay, chairman of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC), said the UDHA was instrumental in the reforms made in the housing sector to benefit the poor particularly the informal-settler families (ISFs).

“UDHA united all the stakeholders of the housing sector paving the way for the delivery of socialized housing to the informal-settlers,” Binay said as the country obs erved the 20th anniversary of the enactment of the UDHA.

“It (UDHA) not only provides opportunity, but the rights to urban poor to have their own houses and lots,” he added.

Binay cited that under the UDHA, housing developers are required to provide at least 20 percent of the total main subdivision area or at least 20 percent of the total project cost for socialized housing.

He said that since 1992 around 350,000 socialized housing units were constructed in compliance to the 20 percent balanced housing requirement.

This, according to Binay, is on top of the 215,000 ISFs who benefitted from the Community Mortgage Program (CMP) projects of the Social Housing Finance Corporation (SHFC) covering the same period.

The cost of the CMP projects is equivalent to P9.3 billion.

Binay also led the awarding of 88 titles to CMP beneficiaries in Metro Manila and another 45 titles to beneficiaries of the national government center-west housing project in Quezon City who have completed payment of their housing loan obligations.

During the event, a representative of landowner J.M. Tuason & Co., Inc., received a check amounting P4,731,905.42.

The amount represents the payment for their property acquired by Taytay Hills HOA through CMP.

“Because of UDHA, the government can boast of significant accomplishments. We were able to maximize our resources for the benefit of the poor such as the utilization of government idle lands for socialized housing,” Binay said.

Although Binay acknowledged that a lot still needs to be done to fully realize the benefits provided for under the UDHA.

“There are many things that we have to do to fully implement what are stated in UDHA. We can only do all these things through your (the people) help and the local government units (LGUs). You are assured of one thing and that is, we, in the housing sector are always ready to assist all of you,” Binay said.

Binay said the UDHA also tasked the LGUs to lead the implementation of housing programs in their localities.

He cited HUDCC’s Pabahay Caravan as a venue where key shelter agencies  can assist LGUs in the realization of their housing projects.

A National Slum Upgrading Strategy (NSUS) and an “alpha listing for beneficaries” is being developed by HUDCC, Binay said.

Binay said the National Slum Upgrading Strategy aims to guide the national government and local government units in the preparation and implementation of effective policies and programs on slum upgrading while the alpha listing for beneficiaries is expected to prevent professional squatters and squatting syndicates from victimizing legitimate housing beneficiaries.

He said the HUDCC also aims to adopt an enhanced National Resettlement Policy Framework (NRPF) that would identify common procedures and guidelines among all infrastructure agencies, the housing agencies, the local government units, and other government agencies, in the implementation of government housing projects.

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