MANILA – The Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) is beefing up stakeholders' engagement to promote President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr.’s priority housing program in the Visayas.

DHSUD Secretary Jose Acuzar, along with other key DHSUD officials, went on a two-day swing in key cities in Visayas -- meeting with local chief executives including, Mandaue City Mayor Jonas Cortes, Tacloban City Mayor Alfred Romualdez, Bacolod City Mayor Albee Benitez, Iloilo City Mayor Jerry Treñas and Iloilo Gov. Art Defensor.

The DHSUD team also met with several mayors in Iloilo province during the Visayas trip.

Acuzar introduced the Marcos administration's national housing program to the local government unit (LGU) officials and inspected several proposed housing project sites in the region.

The DHSUD highlighted the significant role of LGUs for the successful implementation of the Marcos administration's program to address the country’s housing backlog and resettle informal settler families to safer grounds.

“Major cities and provinces in Visayas recorded a significant number of informal settler families (ISFs) and people living in calamity-prone areas. So it is a must to also prioritize the Visayas group of islands,” Acuzar said.

"We must join President Marcos' call for unity to uplift the lives of our kababayans who are dreaming to have decent, affordable and sustainable house of their own," he added.

Part of the administration's priority is addressing the more than 6.5 million housing backlog including the estimated at 3.7 million ISFs throughout the country.

Most of the local leaders committed to support the housing blueprint of the Marcos administration and expressed their readiness to allot land resources for the development of new project sites, including turning esteros into parks and walkways to help in the restoration and rehabilitation of our waterways.

“I am confident on the help of our LGUs to develop and transform these informal settlements into prime residential and world-class developments for the benefit of our countrymen especially those in the low-income bracket,” Acuzar said. (PR)