Oro demolition situation ‘a product of neglect’

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Thursday, August 7, 2014

A CITY hall official blamed the former city mayor for neglecting in years the Dacudao compound situation that ended in the dismantling of houses and resulted to the killing of one of the members of the demolition team on Wednesday, August 5, 2014.

“This is clearly a product of neglect of the previous administration that led to this current situation where there’s already a casualty and where families are left homeless and have no idea where to go,” said Teddy Sabuga-a, City Social Welfare and Development (CSWD) officer.

Uneasiness and confusion bothered the affected residents who have nowhere to go as their homes were taken down by a demolition team hired by the landowner Wednesday.


[READ: Oro demolition team member killed]

Earlier this year, 22 families from the compound had already moved to a property owned by the Dacudao family in Barangay Agusan, and 40 families had relocated to Barangay Canitoan last month joining with the Sendong survivors.

Sabuga-a said that other families did not bother with the city government’s “offer” anymore because they were allegedly promised by some barangay Puntod officials that they will not be removed and can still continue making appeals to the court which issued the writ of demolition.

“The issue there based in our assessment, [is that] some officials have kept on promising the residents that they will not be removed from the compound in which in the most obvious sense, there is nothing that they can do because it was ordered already by the court,” he said.

Puntod barangay chairman Marvin Beja has complained of the lack of assistance to the affected residents from the city government for not showing up at the demolition site.

Beja on TV Patrol Northern Mindanao said the city government should cater to all victims including those who didn’t support Moreno since they are also affected in the demolition.

Sabuga-a, however, said the CSWD has been assisting the residents since last week of July up until the start of the demolition.

“Our people have already been helping the residents in transporting their things. There are even 93 families (some were informal settlers) who enlisted themselves in the relocation program and now he points his fingers at us for not helping here. The question there is: who is now not helping here?” he said.

The relocation site for the families whose houses were demolished is in Canitoan, where other Sendong survivors live. Since some survivors left the program, the CSWD brought in the Dacudao residents.

Under Executive Order number 69 or Presidential Commission for the Urban Poor, informal settlers must not to be neglected and have to be relocated or to be sheltered under a similar program.

CSWD is still looking into making the new settlers become permanent like the other Sendong survivors.

“We are looking into that now, but our topmost priority is putting them in their new homes,” Sabuga-a said.

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on August 07, 2014.

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