ORMOC CITY- The National Housing Authority (NHA) is ready to provide permanent houses to families whose houses were totally destroyed when a 6.4 magnitude earthquake hit Leyte on July 6.
This was disclosed by NHA general manager Marcelino Escalada, Jr., who was in the city to personally briefed President Rodrigo Duterte who visited Ormoc last July 13.
However, the NHA official said that while they have the fund to undertake the project, data as to how many families need new houses has to be reconciled first.
“As of the moment, we can source the fund from our own corporate receipts and reimburse it from the Department of Budget and Management, so long as we can immediately provide the needs of the victims,” Escalada said.
As of July 12, the Regional Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (RDRRMC) data shows that 14 villages in Ormoc were affected by the 6.4 magnitude earthquake that hit the city on July 6.
Kananga town has three affected villages while Carigara has one affected village.
A total of 286 houses were totally damage while 760 were partially damaged based on the RDRRMC data.
However, based on the record of the city government, 748 families totally lost their houses while 1,420 is partially damage.
Data of the Office of Civil Defense with the Department of Social Welfare and Development(DSWD) shows that the combine figure of totally and partially damage houses is 1,046 but data from the city government of Ormoc shows that the total figure is 2,210.
Escalada said that if they will use the data of the RDRRMC, for example, they would only need P85 million out of the reported 286 totally damaged houses in Ormoc.
But if they will use the data of the city government, NHA will need P224 million to construct new houses, he added.
“If we can make the final figure between the 286 or the 748, we shall come up with our final figure on computing for our permanent shelter program,” Escalada said.
NHA total house and lot package is worth P300,000 per housing unit.
“As soon as the DSWD provided the emergency shelter assistance, we will proceed with our permanent shelter,” Escalada added.
The local government unit of this city hopes that the government will soon start the housing project for displaced families of earthquake.
Mayor Richard Gomez said that the city government is ready to use its own fund which is at least P70 million to purchase properties to be used as relocation sites for the intended beneficiaries of the housing project.
Priority villages are those in Tongonan, Cabaon-an, Milagro, Bagong, Cabintan, Gaas, Danao, Nueva Vista, Quezon Jr, San Jose, Liberty, Matica-a, Lake Danao and Hugpa.
“Except for Lake Danao and Tongonan, other relocation sites are within the area but if it is within the area it must be far from the fault line,” said Mayor Gomez.
Gomez said that instead of the recommended five meters to 30 meter away from the danger zone, he is suggesting that on site relocation should be around 300 meters away from the danger zone to ensure safety of the relocated families.
He hopes that with the visit of the President, concern government agencies will soon start the rebuilding works for the affected residents of Ormoc.
“Hopefully within the year we can start the construction of their houses, I don’t want them to wait long before they can transfer to their new houses just like what happened during Yolanda,” Gomez said.
Families who lost their houses due to super typhoon Yolanda, primarily from Tacloban City, were given permanent houses by the government through NHA after more than a year the world’s strongest typhoon hit the city.