BCDA reassures support for JUSMAG relocatees, launches relief operations

Posted : August 8, 2012

The Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) today issued this statement in light of the flashfloods that sunk most of Metro Manila and other Luzon provinces, triggered by the incessant monsoon rains over the past few days.

BCDA president and chief executive officer Arnel Paciano D. Casanova specifically assured former informal settlers of the JUSMAG Area in Fort Bonifacio, who have relocated to Rodriguez town (formerly Montalban) in Rizal province, of adequate relief assistance.

“The difficulties that our fellowmen are going through prompt us further to implement inclusive development in JUSMAG—so that the informal settlers are uplifted,” Casanova stressed.

Casanova was referring to some 69 families who opted to relocate in the National Housing Authority (NHA) site in Rizal, and who were among the victims of the recent calamity which put most of the National Capital Region (NCR) under water.

Earlier, Casanova said that out of 277 families who applied for BCDA’s relocation program to Rizal, 204 families or 93 percent have already voluntarily vacated the 35.5-hectare JUSMAG area, with a total of 113 families opting for outright cash. Of the 69 families relocated, 33 families were among those greatly affected by the flood.

For his part, BCDA Chairman Felicito Payumo added, “We continue to be true to the mandate of BCDA, not only to help modernize the AFP but to do something for the well-being of the soldiers,” said Felicito Payumo, BCDA Chairman.

A BCDA team led by Casanova with BCDA Director Vice Admiral Ferdinand Golez, and vice president for business development Dean Santiago went to the National Housing Authority-identified relocation site in Rodriquez for a first-hand assessment of the situation and presided over the relief operations.

At the launching of relief operations, Casanova said that he would like to personally check on the families affected by the floods in Rodriguez, Rizal and make sure that they have all the assistance they need.

Aside from the direct distribution of relief goods, BCDA is committed to help find a temporary shelter for affected families in Rodriguez while they wait for the floods to subside and their homes cleaned up.

“We will make sure that the calamity victims in Rodriguez, Rizal, find a temporary shelter. The safety of the affected families in other areas not just in Rodriguez, Rizal, is our utmost concern,” BCDA vice president Dean Santiago said.

“We should not allow life’s challenges to paralyze us, rather they should enable us to rediscover our strengths,” the BCDA chief said.

Aside from BCDA’s direct distribution to former JUSMAG relocates, Casanova added that included as beneficiaries of BCDA’s relief operations are the most affected municipalities traversed by the Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway (SCTEX). Initially identified these as Hermosa and Dinalupihan, both of Bataan, Floridablanca of Pampanga and La Paz of Tarlac.

As a government institution, we believe that it is our duty to help our fellowmen in times of need. Our deepest concerns are with those families affected by this natural calamity. We are deeply committed to providing assistance to these affected families,” added Chairman Felicito Payumo.

Several areas of Metro Manila, notably the Provident Village in Marikina City, were in an even more perilous situation than in Rodriguez where the former JUSMAG residents relocated.