The flooding in Metro Manila was found out to have been caused by garbage especially from informal settlers. Now the government is planningg AGAIN to relocate the,.Let us see if the plan to remove these squatters will be more successful compared to the previous administrations,
The squatters’ colonies blocking major waterways in Metro Manila will soon be but a bad memory.
Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo said on Tuesday the national government was planning to relocate some 100,000 informal settlers living near danger zones in Metro Manila.
He said shanties and other illegal structures built along creeks, canals and other waterways would be dismantled to allow the construction of flood-mitigating systems.
Public Works Secretary Rogelio Singson said as much on Monday, saying government would “blast” the houses of informal settlers and other blockages that worsen flooding. He was blasted by urban poor groups.
Blast the shanties? Not even the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos issued such a threat, bristled the leader of Urban Poor Associates (UPA).
“Did you hear the language used about poor people? Singson said he’d blow up homes. Did you ever hear that before, even during the Marcos’ years?” UPA executive director Denis Murphy said in a phone interview.
The poor would be “shocked” to hear this, added Murphy, a former Jesuit priest who had been working with the urban poor in Metro Manila since cofounding the UPA.
“Blow up the houses of people, as if they were bandits, crooks or robbers, and the government has to go in, and bomb them? I think the poor would be shocked to hear those words,” he said.
Faced with the furor, Singson said that when he talked about blasting structures, he was referring to the blasting of illegal fish pens in the Pampanga delta during the watch of then President Fidel V. Ramos.
“There will be no blasting of illegal occupants in Metro Manila,” he said by phone. “I’m not that violent.”
Robredo said “we have actually taken the first step when we started the inventory of informal settlers (in Metro Manila) and where we could locate them.”
Robredo also said the target is to complete relocation within five years.