Gabriela assails NHA for ‘politicizing’ awarding of housing units in Bulacan

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MANILA, Philippines — The women’s group Gabriela Women’s Party on Saturday slammed the National Housing Authority for refusing to issue entry pass stubs for qualified housing beneficiaries in Villa Lois, Pandi, Bulacan.

The release of entry passes for qualified beneficiaries in Pandi today is a result of continuous dialogues with the agency, as well as part of the resolution between urban poor group Kadamay and NHA based on last year’s consultation at the House of Representatives.

According to Kadamay, NHA officials declared that they will refuse to issue entry pass stubs to members of the organization unless they quit and join the military-backed ‘pro-government’ organization that has been harassing residents of Pandi.

Gabriela Rep. Arlene Brosas said that NHA’s move is unconstitutional and that everyone is entitled to have access to decent housing regardless of political affiliation.

“It was clear during last year’s consultation with the National Housing Authority at the House of Representatives that those who currently occupy housing units in Pandi will undergo a validation process, and that those who will be validated will be qualified for an entry pass. As a matter of fact, Gabriela Women’s Party was there during the whole process. We were also able to obtain the official list of validated housing beneficiaries which was released by the agency itself,” Brosas said.

Brosas also pointed out that the NHA’s response to homelessness and displacement is a preview of the government’s rehabilitation response to families affected by the Taal volcano eruption.

“NHA is politicizing the awarding of housing units to thousands of poor families in Pandi. At this point, we fear that the over 30,000 families who were displaced due to the Taal volcano eruption might suffer the same fate,” Brosas said.

“We would like to remind NHA that their mandate is to provide decent, adequate, and affordable housing to low-income families, and that being part of a ‘pro-government’ organization should not be part of the criteria. We call on the agency to explain this hypocrisy and shameless discrimination towards progressive individuals and organizations,” Brosas said. (Stacy Ang/IAMIGO/Currentph.com)

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