BIBAK illegal squatters defy demolition; press relocation

>> Sunday, July 16, 2017

By Dexter A See 

BAGUIO CITY – Some illegal squatters of Bontoc-Ifugao-Benguet-Apayao-Kalinga (BIBAK) property along Harrison road here defied the June 30 deadline for them to dismantle their building s with some saying they still have to find relocation sites.
There are more than 60 illegal structures at the BIBAK property.
 Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan said the scheduled demolition did not push through as he has to convene the inter-agency committee composed of the representative from the Presidential Commission on the Urban Poor, regional Environment and Indigenous Peoples directors, City Building official and himself to discuss schedule of demolition.
He said demolition will be done anytime, adding he received feelers from informal settlers who committed to voluntarily demolish their structures while others remain adamant in leaving the government property despite signing agreement for them to to voluntarily dismantle their structures on or before June 30.
“We have to consult the inter-agency committee members on when to schedule the demolition of the illegal structures in the area. We cannot demolish all the structures in one day that is why we have to work on the schedule to allow us to convince the informal settlers to be the ones to remove their structures and not to wait for the demolition team to do so,” Domogan said.
He added he was informed by PCUP officials the squatters are willing to vacate the property and remove their structures but what is delaying them is difficulty in locating a temporary relocation area where they could transfer while awaiting the completion of the documentary requirements for their identified relocation site in La Trinidad, Benguet.
Domogan said he was also informed by officials of the Housing Land Use Regulatory Board in the Cordillera that they approved the registration of the group from the BIBAK area as a homeowners association to be able to legitimize their transactions with concerned government agencies and the La Trinidad municipal government regarding their proposed relocation site.
He urged the BIBAK squatters to cooperate with the PCUP to hasten processing of documents for finalization of agreements with the land owners of their proposed relocation site.
With this, they could start negotiating acquisition of loans from concerned government agencies for their houses to be built in the area and abandon the government property which is being eyed to be fenced before the preparation of the appropriate master plan for the upcoming BIBAK students in the city.

The 5,000-square meter BIBAK property along Harrison Road is under Original Certificate of title (OCT) No. 1 under the Republic of the Philippines which was  ceded to the BIBAK organization several decades ago and is now under the care of the NCIP-CAR.  


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