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MANILA – The Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) targets to build six million housing units in the next six years through its Pambansang Pabahay para sa Pilipino program, with a production average rate of one million housing units per year.
 
During the Laging Handa public briefing on Wednesday, DHSUD Assistant Secretary for Support System Avelino Tolentino said the funds that will be allotted in the program will not be directly used in housing construction, but in housing interest support instead.
 
"Kapag po naglagay tayo ng (If we put) housing interest support doon sa ating mga benepisyaryo, tataas po ang kanilang (to our beneficiaries, it will increase their) affordability level at magiging (and they will be) bankable po sila –meaning to say, iyong (their) account po nila, puwede po nating i-takeout sa bangko at iyon po ang sikreto ng programang ito dahil po hindi na po magiging (we can take it out from the bank and that is also the secret of this program because it will not be) dependent sa (to) General Appropriations Act ang pagtatayo po ng pabahay (the building of houses)," he said.
 
Tolentino cited data from the Philippine Statistics Authority indicating that the country is in need of around 6.5 million housing units this year.
 
"So iyan po ang gusto nating solusyunan, gusto nating sagutin; kaya nga po ang programa ng ating Pangulong Bongbong Marcos ay ang magkaroon po, mag-produce po tayo ng (that is what we want to address; that is why the program of our President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. aims to have, to produce) one million housing units per year," he said.
 
The Pambansang Pabahay para sa Pilipino program, Tolentino said, is not only seen as a solution to the housing backlog but will also bring economic gains for the country in time after the pandemic.
 
During the House Committee on Appropriations budget hearing with DHSUD, congressmen were elated to hear about the program, saying it is "innovative" and "out of the box".
 
Tolentino said the role of Congress is “very important” in helping DHSUD smoothly implement its programs.
 
"Kailangang-kailangan po ang tulong ng ating mga kongresista dahil ito pong programang ito ay mangangailangan po ng pondo na ang magdi-desisyon po ay ang ating (We really need the help of our congressmen because this program will need funds which will be decided by the our) House of Representatives. So natutuwa po kami at nakikita namin sila na magiging partners dito sa ating programang ito (we are happy and we are seeing them as future partners here in this program)," he said.
 
DHSUD Secretary Jose Acuzar, since he assumed his post, has been meeting with local government units (LGUs) and visiting possible housing project sites around the country.
 
Acuzar said LGUs also play an important role in making the agency's initiatives possible. (PNA)