Philippines, Urban Poor 10K Walk, An Appeal for Floodway Proclamation
2000 urban poor joined today a 10 kilometer walk, to appeal to President Benigno Aquino III for a proclamation for land tenure security and socialized housing in the Floodway that will benefit 20,000 residents.
The walk stretches from Taytay, Cainta to Pasig Floodway to stress that people has the right to live in the city. This is also a call to engage all affected families to demand from the government a just and humane response for safe and secure settlement of informal settlers families(ISF) living in floodway, Rizal.
The 10k walk was initiated by Community Organizers Multiversity (COM), Exodus Homeowners Association, Damayan Homeowners Association, Pag-asa Homeowners Association, Maharlika Homeowners Association and Alliance of People’s Organization Along Manggahan Pasig.
Urban poor along the stretch of floodway have long been a beneficiary of three Presidential Proclamations (PP) that aim to provide socialized housing. PP 458 and PP 704 were issued under President Fidel V. Ramos and PP1160 under President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.
PP 458 S. 1994 reserving portions of Embankment in Manggahan Floodway, PP 704 S. 1995 reserving a portion of public domain in Taytay, and PP 1160 s. 2006 reserving portions of the Berm slopes of East and West Floodway. These were later revoked by President Arroyo through an Executive Order 854 in 2009, shortly after Typhoon Ondoy without sufficient technical and legal basis.
Marlon Quirante, President of Exodus Homeowners Association Taytay, said, “We want President Aquino to lift EO 854 that totally revokes our rights for a decent housing. We have been crying for his help to implement socialized housing for families of floodway.”
Quirante added, “We have even gathered 10,000 signatures to support our cause. We are hopeful that through our mass actions President Aquino will be guided to act with compassion to protect our housing rights.”
President Aquino signed a covenant with urban poor that set the legalization of settlement in Manggahan, Floodway. The covenant inspired the people of Floodway to develop a disaster-resilient community through a housing design suitable in the area of the Floodway.
In parting, Bella dela Rosa, President of Damayan Homeowners Association said, “We will do everything to push our on-site housing. In today’s walk, we also gave emphasis on the need to amend Urban Development and Housing Act (RA7279) to ensure that all poor people will have access to a law that serves poor people interests.”