Manila – The shanties of more than 2,000 families have been demolished by the local government of Pasig with the help of its local police, barangay, engineering, social welfare and urban housing office.
This was at the East Bank of Brgy. Sta. Lucia on the edge of Mangahan Floodway, in compliance with the December 18, 2008 Mandamus order of the Supreme Court directing the MMDA and other national and local agencies to clear major waterways and “easements”, which includes the Manggahan floodway control site.
The city government gave PhP20,000 financial assistance to every family and groceries good for five days. They ferried away the relocatees to prescribed relocation sites Tanay, Rizal as well as Calauan, Laguna.
Others were fortunate to obtain unit allocations at National Housing Authority Low Rise Building (LRB) housing projects near the city proper.
According to the Pasig City PIO press release, this action was the product of seven years of dialogue and planning between the national and local government agencies concerned, with leaders of APOAMF-P – the Alliance of Peoples Organisations Along Manggahan Floodway-Pasig, representing the squatter community living in the area since the administration of former president Fidel V. Ramos.
Many of the residents in the area came from various parts of Metro Manila during massive expropriation of land for the C5 Circumferential Road project over the years.
A breakaway group of around 1,000 families, Balikwas-Kadamay, led by Rody Villarreal said that they will contest the decision in the proper legal venue, on behalf of thise who are fighting for the right to remain and did not avail of the relocation offer and financial assistance. Many of the informal settlers wanted to become beneficiaries of a so-called “Home Along the Floodway” project.
Below are scenes from the second day of the demolition at the east floodway bank of Brgy. Sta Lucia, Pasig City.
ALL PHOTOGRAPHS BY BERNARD TESTA, NEWS5 | INTERAKSYON.