Members of the urban poor group Kadamay trooped to the National Housing Authority’s (NHA) main office in Quezon City on Friday, threatening to take over more unoccupied public housing projects like what they did in Pandi, Bulacan, in March.
The group renewed its demand for idled homes to be distributed among the poor, a day after the NHA deadline elapsed for police and military personnel to occupy the housing units earlier awarded to them.
They also brought up President Duterte’s earlier remarks that bigger and better homes would be constructed instead for soldiers and policemen.
Gloria Arellano, Kadamay chair, said NHA officials had informed her group that the list of officials and units to be occupied by members of the Philippine National Police and Armed Forces of the Philippines would be released next week.
“We were told that they still have not finalized the list,” Arellano told the Inquirer. “What is taking them so long considering that they had already extended the deadline?”
The NHA gave the police and military personnel until June 15 to occupy their assigned housing units. If they fail to do so, the units would be given to other beneficiaries, such as informal settlers.
The PNP and AFP housing boards were earlier given a May 30 deadline to submit a master list of personnel still interested to live in the projects.
Arellano warned that the urban poor would again stage an “Occupy” movement if the master list is not released soon.
“There are still so many vacant housing units. In Bulacan province alone, there are 10,200 idle units,” she said. “Nationwide, there are more than 100,000.”
Citing government figures, Kadamay said the number of informal settler families nationwide had swelled to 1.5 million.
Kadamay has a scheduled dialogue with with NHA general manager Marcelino Escalada Jr. on Monday.