Militants to fight eviction from housing project

Ramon Efren Lazaro - The Philippine Star

PANDI, Bulacan, Philippines – Members of the militant Kalipunan ng Damayang Mahihirap (Kadamay) who took over vacant units at a housing project in this town have vowed to fight the eviction order.

Kadamay members barricaded the units that they occupied as the National Housing Authority  (NHA) issued the eviction order at around 4 p.m. yesterday.

Senior Inspector Michael Bernardo, Pandi police deputy chief, said the eviction order does not mean that the militants have to immediately vacate the housing units.

“They will be given several days to leave,” Bernardo said.

At past 1 p.m., a team from the Department of Social Welfare and Development was allowed to enter the housing project to assess the situation.

Norman de la Cruz, one of those tasked by Kadamay to guard the entrance of Pandi Village 2 and 3 in Barangay Mapulang Lupa told The STAR that they would mobilize a protest action if they would be forced to vacate the housing units.

He said only those with identification cards issued by Kadamay could enter the premises.

In an interview over GMA News, Gloria Arellano, Kadamay national chairperson, said they would not entertain any dialogue if the NHA would only ask them to leave.

Arellano said they only occupied the housing units that are vacant and with no owners.

She said at least 10,000 housing units in government projects remain idle.

Arellano said many of their members have applied for housing, but their applications were not processed.

Meanwhile, at Villa Elise in Barangay Masuso, Kadamay leader Marissa Palomeno said they did not put up barricades to prevent violence. 

Palomeno urged the government not to punish them, saying they just want a decent place to live.


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