Feature: 1M homes for the poor
Manila (6 May) -- Urban poor communities as well as low and middle-income families have benefited government's housing program under the administration of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.
More than one million poor families have been amortizing their own homes since the assumption to office of President in 2001.
Vice-President Noli de Castrol, concurrent chair of the Housing and urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC) said President Arroyo's houusing program has provided more decent homes to urban poor communities and the low and middle-income families.
De Castro said, President Arroyo has allocated the biggest funding for housing, approved the biggest amount for loans to informal settlers, implemented the lowest interest rates and a more efficient process in the grant of housing loans and declared more government lands as housing sites.
"For the past nine years, the President has transformed housing into one of the dynamic sectors of the economy," de Castro said.
He said, the Home Development mutual (PAG-IBIG) Fund provided higher lonable amounts, lower intest rate, longer repayment terms and faster processing loan application for the formal settlers resulting in the surge in home acquisition among the low and middle income families since 2001.
For the informal sector, de Castro said, the Asset Reform Program has improved security of tenure, particularly the relocation of 105,000 families under the Rail Relocation and Rsettlement Program, the biggest and most successful undertaking of its kind by the national government in recent history.
De Castro said, the strengthened Community Mortgage Program (CMP) also released P5.3 billion which funded 963 projects focused solely on shelter programs for the informal sector.
Another unprecedented achievement, he said, is the President's issuance of 113 proclamations declaring about 27,000 hectares of government lands all over the country as socialized housing sites benefiting an estimated families.
As this developed, a number of beneficiariest of government housing program have expressed their gratitude to President Arroyo.
Marissa del Mar, president of the National Real Estate Association said, President Arroyo's housing program has helped establish over 1.1 million housing units cine 2001 which contributed trillions of pesos to the national economy.
Taguig City Mayor Sigfrido Tinga, on the other hand, sad, in partnership with the private sector, his city garnered the Galing Pook Award last year through the government's housing program for rail dwellers. (pbc/PIA) [top]