Congress authorizes NHA to redistribute Bulacan housing units

MANILA, Philippines – The 17th Congress gave the green light to the National Housing Authority (NHA) to award to other qualified beneficiaries the unoccupied housing units in Pandi, Bulacan. 

On Wednesday, May 16, Malacañang sent the media a copy of the 17th Congress' Joint Resolution No. 2, allowing the redistribution of empty housing units that were originally meant for soldiers and police.

The joint resolution was signed by both Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III and Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez. 

According to the document, the NHA was able to complete 63,836 out of the targeted 74,197 housing units as of July 31, 2017. 

Only 8,837 of the completed units, however, have been occupied by members of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP), Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), and the Philippine National Police (PNP). (WATCH: VLOG: Inside a housing unit in Pandi, Bulacan)

The lawmakers noted a Commission on Audit (COA) report saying that the low occupancy rate would cost the government the opportunity to recover expenses that could be spent for other social projects. The housing units, if left unoccupied, would slowly deteriorate as well.

Lawmakers also quoted COA as saying that the low occupancy rate at the AFP-PNP Housing Project could lead to the housing units being occupied by families or persons other than the intended beneficiaries. 

Congress then authorized the NHA to grant to "qualified beneficiaries," including other government employees and poor families, the following:

The NHA is tasked to prioritize low-salaried government employees and the families of the lowest 30% of urban income-earners. 

Prior to the signing of the joint resolution, around 2,000 BJMP, AFP, and PNP personnel already waived the ownership of the houses awarded to them. 

Members of urban poor group Kadamay have occupied several of the housing units already, but a congressional resolution was needed to legalize their occupation there.

Read a full copy of the joint resolution below:

https://www.scribd.com/embeds/379400414/content?start_page=1&view_mode=scroll&access_key=key-YQh0ylC1RQVsUoZVN5G7&show_recommendations=true" data-auto-height="false" data-aspect-ratio="0.7729220222793488" scrolling="no" id="doc_72178" width="100%" height="600" frameborder="0">

– Rappler.com

Mara Cepeda

Mara Cepeda writes about politics and women’s rights for Rappler. She covers the House of Representatives and the Office of the Vice President. Got tips? Send her an email at mara.cepeda@rappler.com or shoot her a tweet @maracepeda.

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