MANILA — President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. on Tuesday urged Congress to set aside funds in the national budget to subsidize the monthly amortization of government housing beneficiaries.
Speaking to tricycle drivers and operators who are beneficiaries of the housing project in Batasan, Quezon City, Marcos said he and Housing Secretary Jerry Acuzar are mulling some P1-billion worth of initial subsidy for this.
"Many of our beneficiaries could not... afford the monthly amortization of these units," Marcos said.
"I now call on Congress for your support including housing interest support as part of the regular appropriations for the succeeding years," he added.
"Siguro maglalagay tayo diyan, pag nakaharap tayo ng pera diyan, mga P1 billion to start with para mayroong tayong subsidy na maibibigay para sa mga tenant."
Acuzar said this does not mean that the interest subsidy would cover all the tenant's fees, as it only aims to lower their monthly amortization rate.
"More or less, lumalabas na P3,500 to P4,000. Minsan... P8,000 ang normal. Kapag with the interest subsidy, P3,000, depending sa location," Acuzar told reporters during a chance interview.
"Mayroon kaming pinag-uusapan na P1 billion for this year, by next year since naumpisahan na natin at kuhanan na ng units, doon kailangan ng mas maraming interest subsidy," he said.
The housing project under the Pambansang Pabahay Para sa Pilipino Housing (4PH) in Batasan features two 33-story buildings with a total of 2,160 units, "planned to become both commercial and residential," the housing department said.
It will also improve the Batasan TODA (Batoda) terminal, which is currently surrounded by several retail stores. Vendors will be temporarily relocated.
Four to five individuals can live in one housing unit, said Acuzar.
Hundreds of beneficiaries will come from the Batoda, considered the biggest tricycle operators and drivers association in the country. Interested applicants for housing can apply in the Quezon City hall but they must not possess any real estate to qualify.
Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte said the housing project affirms the government's goal to protect citizens and provide decent shelter to poor Filipinos.
Aside from this, a groundbreaking for another housing project took place in Cauayan City, Isabela. This features 9 5-story buildings "complete with recreational parks and amenities."