‘Partnerships needed to build decent homes for Filipinos’

Alexis Romero - The Philippine Star
�Partnerships needed to build decent homes for Filipinos�
President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. on Monday spearheads the turnover of the 1,380 housing units of the St. Gregory Homes Project in Barangay Panghulo, Malabon City.
PPA pool photos by Renato Dilan

MANILA, Philippines — The government is studying ways to use its idle lands for housing programs, President Marcos said yesterday, as he called for cooperation between state agencies and the private sector in providing decent shelters to Filipinos, especially those living in risky areas.

Marcos led the groundbreaking for a new housing site in Arkong Bato, Valenzuela City and the turnover of 1,380 housing units under the St. Gregory Homes Project in Malabon as part of efforts to address the country’s 6.5 million housing backlog.

Speaking during the groundbreaking ceremony in Valenzuela, Marcos said the housing projects would benefit families living in danger zones and those affected by projects of the government.

“For now, our government is continuously working to build more houses for our beloved countrymen,” the President said.

“We are continuously studying how to identify and use the idle lands of the government that can become the site of the housing projects, in line with existing laws and regulations,” he added.

Marcos instructed housing agencies to continue building quality and affordable shelters for Filipinos and to ensure that the beneficiaries of the projects would have livelihood opportunities.

“It is important to work with other agencies and the private sector to achieve our collective goals,” Marcos said in Filipino.

The Disiplina Village Arkong Bato in Valenzuela City, the fourth of its kind, will have 20 five-story buildings that will benefit 1,200 informal settler families living near the Tullahan River and Manila Bay.

There are three other Disiplina villages in Barangays Ugong, Bignay and Lingunan, Valenzuela City. The first two villages in Ugong and Bignay, which occupy a total of 12.9 hectares, were built for informal settlers displaced by Typhoon Ondoy in 2009 and can accommodate more than 4,500 people.

The Valenzuela City government relocated 164 families to the third in-city resettlement site in Barangay Lingunan in 2020.

The St. Gregory Homes Project in Malabon has 23 five-story buildings with 1,380 residential units built through a partnership between the National Housing Authority (NHA) and the Malabon local government.

The project is intended for informal settler families living along Malabon City’s waterways and danger zones, and those affected by the construction of the public works department’s pumping stations.

According to the Presidential Communications Office, 720 units are ready for occupancy, while around 400 families have moved in as of Feb. 27.

“For the information of everyone, ensuring the success of human settlements and housing projects of our government are close to my heart,” the President said.

“I am challenging myself and other public servants in DHSUD (Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development), NHA, especially in the LGUs (local government units) to provide the housing needs within my term as president. I believe we can achieve it if everyone cooperates, follows the law and observes the bayanihan spirit of the Filipino,” he added.

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