By CHITO CHAVEZ
Urban poor group Kalipunan ng Damayang Mahihirap (Kadamay) yesterday cited President Duterte’s freeze on demolitions, particularly when no resettlement plans are in place for the affected families.
However, Kadamay national chairperson Gloria “Ka Bea” Arellano said Duterte would do well to look into the state of the existing relocation sites to understand why urban poor families continue to suffer in their new communities.
Kadamay is the largest alliance among the urban poor, with 70,000 members in various chapters and affiliates nationwide.
“The nearly inhuman conditions plaguing in these relocation sites must be addressed first in order to persuade the affected families that they can expect water, electricity and transportation to be available to them,” Arellano noted.
Kadamay also expressed concern about government’s insisting that private developers take the leading role in building these relocation sites, noting that private firms impose higher amortization rates on socialized housing units.
Arellano added that “in recent years, the number of families in relocation sites has ballooned due to the unabated evictions and demolitions. Most of the families living there are going through hell and many have already returned to the metropolis. With little or no electricity and water, transportation services, basic community facilities and livelihood opportunities, they have been left with no choice but to return to the cities, where they have a fighting chance to eke out a living.”
Kadamay estimated that more than 100,000 families have been shipped out to resettlement sites in the past decade.