By Jelly F. Musico | US News Las Vegas
Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. vowed on Thursday to fast-track the finalization of the Senate bill creating the Department of Housing and Urban Development (DHUD) that shall address the increasing demand for urban poor housing, regulate urban growth and prevent deterioration of the environment.
“We can conclude that current housing programs have fallen way short of effectively responding to existing housing demand, especially of the urban poor. We just have to admit the fact that accomplishments are far from satisfactory and this brings me to the urgent need to fast- track the finalization of the Senate bill that would give birth to the DHUD,” he said.
Marcos, who is chairman of the Senate committee on urban planning, housing and resettlement, emphasized that the creation of the DHUD will provide the core capacity required to improve sector governance and to address sector issues and challenges stemming from rapid urbanization, uncontrolled urban growth, increasing urban poverty, and a deteriorating urban environment.
“The department will enable the government to address these problems through the formulation and implementation of the necessary reforms, sector policies and program interventions that will mobilize public and private resources and ensure their synchronization,” Marcos explained.
Speaking before the 2nd National Convention of the Organization of Socialized Housing Developers of the Philippines-Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (OSHDP-HUDCC) held at Holiday Inn Hotel, Mimosa Leisure Estate Clark Freeport, Pampanga, the senator also encouraged private sector and stakeholders to actively participate in the pro-poor housing projects to develop low-cost housing at market prices under a local government’s city-wide urban redevelopment.
“I believe that OSHDP is an active advocate of social change and I commend you for taking the lead in the formidable challenge of housing the poor. I do not want to sound repetitious and I believe it is also my role as chairman of the Senate committee on urban planning, housing and resettlement to urgently encourage you to continue and intensify your active participation in HUDCC now and in the DHUD when it is established and in operation,” Marcos stressed.
Marcos also believes that when the DHUD finally gets legally enacted and activated, the role of OSHDP as a private sector player and stakeholder shall be further enhanced.
“The OSHDP has a very noble vision of promoting human dignity through decent affordable housing among poor and marginalized Filipinos. You strive to provide more decent affordable housing that will allow you to earn while serving the poor and giving them human security, being the private sector representative and partner of HUDCC. I am confident that the OSHDP will continue to be an effective agent of social change, especially in the housing and settlements sector,” Marcos added.