OFW village to rise in Kidapawan

(The Philippine Star) - May 15, 2021 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — As part of efforts to fulfill his commitment to help overseas Filipino workers (OFWs), Sen. Bong Go attended the groundbreaking ceremony for the OFW Village in Kidapawan City, North Cotabato last Wednesday.

The village, as initiated by the National Housing Authority, is a housing project intended for the city’s homeless, landless and underprivileged OFWs who were affected by several earthquakes in 2019. It can generate 181 lots of about 120 square meters each.

Go, vice chairman of the Senate committee on housing, said the government recognizes the sacrifices of OFWs currently working abroad just to uplift their family’s living conditions.

He stressed the need to provide them with support through housing opportunities, especially to those whose families were affected by various crises and calamities.

“I want our OFWs to know that the government is here and ready to help you,” Go said, adding that he continues to push for the passage of his bill that aims to establish the Department of Overseas Filipinos to better address the needs of Filipinos abroad and their families here.

He also noted Senate Bill 203 which aims to provide continuous funding support to implement the major components of the National Development and Production Housing Program in order to make decent housing available and affordable for Filipinos in need.

Aside from this, he also filed Senate Bill 1227 which aims to provide rental subsidy for displaced families during the interim process of construction of their permanent housing units and eventual relocation.

Go reassured families displaced by earthquakes and other disasters of a government that is committed to helping them get back on their feet as they rebuild their homes and reestablish their livelihoods.

“Because we are still in the middle of the pandemic and the series of calamities, President Duterte and I decided to make the efforts to help our countrymen recover and build back better our main priority. Let us stop bickering, this is not the time for politics,” he said.

During the groundbreaking ceremony at Barangay Kalaisan, Go’s team handed out meals, food packs, vitamins, masks and face shields to 68 households composed of 32 OFW families and 36 family-beneficiaries displaced by flood and fire incidents.

New pairs of shoes, walking canes, crutches, wheelchairs, bicycles and computer tablets were also given.

Representatives from the NHA and the Department of Social Welfare and Development also gave financial assistance while the Department of Health handed out medicine packs and additional vitamins to each household. The Department of Agriculture gave supplies of vegetable seeds.

As chairman of the Senate committee on health, Go said people needing medical assistance could seek help from the Malasakit Center at the Cotabato Provincial Hospital or from any of the 110 Malasakit centers established nationwide.

Go commended NHA general manager Jun Escalada, Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo, Mindanao Development Authority Secretary Emmanuel Piñol, Kidapawan City Mayor Joseph Evangelista and Makilala Mayor Armando Quibod, among others, for their untiring service.

To further boost infrastructure development in the region, Go has supported the funding of several projects in Kidapawan City, such as the construction of a multi-purpose building in Barangay Sikitan and the Del Pilar bridge that connects Barangays Linangcob and Del Pilar in Magpet town as well as the concreting and widening of roads in Brgy. Poblacion.

He also supported the funding of the construction of the Guangan bridge, a multi-purpose building near the public market and the Liga Office in Makilala town.

A similar activity was held for hundreds of earthquake-affected families at the Ilomavis relocation site, also in Kidapawan.

According to Go, the OFW village and other interventions being done by the government are part of the efforts to fulfill his and Duterte’s commitment to help affected communities build back better.

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