Students slam Duterte’s statement to evict KADAMAY

League of Filipino Students (LFS) denounced the statement of President Duterte pursuing the eviction of the members of Kalipunan ng Damayang Mahihirap (KADAMAY) from the idle housing they have occupied.

According to LFS national spokesperson JP Rosos, revealed the anti-poor and anti-democratic nature of the Duterte regime.

On Monday, President Duterte said that there will be no tolerance for the occupants of idle housing units provided by the government. Force may be used to settle the feud between the National Housing Authority (NHA) and the families. The incident seems to paint the government as an ineffective body, he continued.

“He should feel that way. The occupation of the housing units of Bulacan does not only champion the needs of the people and their ability to get the rights that they deserve, but a reminder that this government, other than serving the interests of foreigners and corporations, is undeniably inutile. Its incompetency has led to housing units empty for 5 years–instead of giving it to its rightful owners, they leave it to rot,” LFS national spokesperson JP Rosos said in a statement.

Relocation sites in Bulacan number from 15,000-20,000 idle units in the past five years. Families relocated by the NHA will live in the units for free for a year but will have to pay P250 every month in the succeeding year, increasing annually for 30 years.

Duterte also accused the incident to be fueled by anarchy and expressed his disappointment. He said that issues like this should always be processed in dialogues and bureaucracy.

“When the government fails to provide its peoples’ needs and fails to uphold their rights, it is justified with legalities and processes that lead nowhere; but when it is the citizens who fight for themselves, they are tagged as anarchists. They have been through five dialogues with the government, its agencies, and officials of the Palace; they suffer in poor housing conditions and indebt themselves with high rental rates and living costs everyday–how much more must they have to endure and how long do they have to wait before they have what is rightfully theirs?” Rosos said.

“Through neoliberal policies, the government transforms public service into a business venture. It gives no regard to the people’s welfare and strives to fatten itself and its corrupt officials. The NHA connives with private contractors and use low-quality materials to build houses, some with barely enough space for one family to live in, and refuse to distribute it to its rightful owners,” he continued.

“The League of Filipino Students express their full support to the urban poor and their campaign for free housing. We have visited them last weekend and we will do it again on March 18. We are sending them our solidarity and we pledge to give them our utmost support,” Rosos ended. ###