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Informal Settlers Living in Danger Zones to be Relocated

SquattersThe National Housing Authority (NHA) is constructing over 6,000 housing units for the relocation of informal settlers living in danger zones in different parts of Metro Manila.


Vice President Jejomar Binay, the chairman of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC) said that 10 multi-level low-rise housing projects worth P3.2 billion are to be constructed to house informal settler families living in waterways and other danger zones in Metro Manila.


The projects are located in Smokey Mountain in Tondo, Manila; Tala 2 and Camarin in Caloocan City; Pleasant Hills in San Jose del Monte, Bulacan; Tanza, Gulayan and Tanglaw in Navotas; MMDA Depot in Manggahan, Pasic City; National Government Center Housing Project in Quezon City; and Disiplina Vilage 2 in Valenzuela City.


Binay said that based on the data gathered by the NHA from local government units in 2011, there are 31,275 informal settlers comprising 30 percent of families in danger zones in Quezon City, while 26,029 families are in Manila.


The major waterways that the government wanted to clear and are considered as danger zones are the Pasig River, San Juan River, Tullahan river, Manggahan Floodway, Maricaban Creek and Tripa de Gallina.


Different efforts had been done to discourage squatting in the metro. The Departmen of Justice (DOJ) has been filing cases against squatter families that have been occupying waterways that cause flooding and traffic problems in the country’s capital.


The Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) has already identified and photographed the illegal structures along the esteros and rivers, though a court process must be followed before they could be evicted or relocated.


Meanwhile President Benigno Aquino III said that many of the 20,000 squatter families living along the waterways were identified as priorities to be cleared within the year had agreed to be relocated.


There are groups whose relocation site is ready, while the others are still being built but were given the money to pay rent for temporary dwelling while the place for their transfer is still being constructed.

Corabelle is the Bayanihan's Phillippine News Correspondent.