Palace hastens release of housing units to Yolanda victims

CABINET Secretary Karlo Nograles. (Photo courtesy of Assitant Sec. Sylton Solidum)

By: Gerome Dalipe

THE National Government is fast-tracking the turnover of new houses for families displaced by super typhoon Yolanda in 2013, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said yesterday.

In an interview with reporters prior to his meeting with the Regional Peace and Order Council at the Iloilo International Airport, Nograles said they are ironing out mechanisms for the formal turnover of the housing units to the recipients.

“We want to fast track the distribution of the completed housing units to the beneficiaries,” said Nograles, who is also the head of the inter-agency task force.

Nograles, a former Davao City first district representative, was in Iloilo City for the Regional Peace and Order Council Meeting.

In an interview, Nograles said that President Rodrigo Duterte instructed the inter-agency task force Yolanda to start distributing the remaining housing units in small batches so the beneficiaries can move in right away.

Nograles said he coordinated with various municipalities in Iloilo Province and discussed the terms in the distribution of the housing units.

Among the mechanism to hasten the distribution of the housing units is to create a local inter-agency committee per municipality, he said.

Nograles said they are working with the power cooperatives and some water company to speed up the installation of electricity and water supply in the relocation sites.

Likewise, the National Housing Authority (NHA) is expected to complete the entire housing project for displaced families by 2020, said Nograles.

The government will not wait for the 100 percent completion of the housing units and instead start distributing units that are ready for occupancy.

Once finished, the relocation sites will be turned into communities complete with all amenities, Nograles added.