January 10, 2011
An urban poor group led a human chain and noise barrage protest this morning to call on the government to fulfill the campaign promise of President Benigno Aquino III on a comprehensive reform of the housing program for the poor and a moratorium on demolitions. The group Kilos Maralita is pushing for a three-year moratorium on demolitions, evictions and foreclosures.
Some 300 urban poor from the constituent groups of Kilos Maralita such as the North Triangle Association, LUPA and Alyansa ng Maralitang Pilipino (AMP) participated in the protest. The protesters linked arms in a human chain along EDSA from the corner of North Avenue to the corner of Quezon Avenue. They also held a 30-minute noise barrage by banging on pots and pans.
Teody Gacer of Kilos Maralita and leader of the North Triangle residents asserted that “It is high time that PNoy carry out his promise during the presidential campaign. We want government action on a thoroughgoing reform of socialized housing. We demand a three-year moratorium on demolitions.”
Tomorrow Kilos Maralita is going to Malacanang for a dialogue with government officials on their demand. The renewed campaign for a moratorium is in the face of reports that government is going to sign an executive order for a three-month moratorium.
“A three-month moratorium is a sick joke on the urban poor,” Gracer insisted. Representatives of the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) and the National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC) will accompany the Kilos ng Maralita leaders in the Malacanang dialogue. CHR and NAPC have formally supported the Kilos Maralita demand for a three-year moratorium.