Photo from Office of the Presidential Spokerperson

The Home Development Mutual Fund (Pag-IBIG Fund) Board headed by Secretary Jose Rizalino Acuzar of the Department of Human Settlement and Urban Development (DHSUD) on Monday approved the allocation of PHP250 billion to the administration’s Pambansang Pabahay para sa Pilipino program.

The amount will help guarantee the accomplishment of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr.’s flagship housing program where he committed to build 6 million housing units in six years as the country’s Chief Executive.

“This is a huge boost to our President’s Pambansang Pabahay para sa Pilipino Program –a giant step towards realizing the dream of every Filipino family to have decent, safe and affordable shelters,” Acuzar said in a news release on Tuesday.

“On behalf of those wishing to have their dream homes, my deepest gratitude to the members of the Pag-IBIG Fund Board of Trustees especially to Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Marilene Acosta for her all-out support,” he added.

With assured funding support from Pag-IBIG Fund, Acuzar is very optimistic of the success of the program which is designed to address the country’s housing backlog pegged at more than 6.5 million.

Under the program, Marcos tasked the DHSUD to build 1 million houses annually in the next six years.

In a related development, Pag-IBIG Fund also signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) with Bacolod City Mayor Albee Benitez for the construction of 10,000 housing units for informal settler families (ISFs) also on Monday.

The historic deal marks the first MOA signed under the “Pambansang Pabahay”, signalling the initial fruition of the government’s plan to address the housing needs in the country.

Acuzar said the agreement unlocks the potential of the new housing program, especially the financial structure and the active participation of government financial institutions (GFIs) and the private sector.

The MOA tasks DHSUD to facilitate the implementation of the housing project in collaboration with the local government units and other relevant agencies by acting as the overall enabler, initiator and coordinator.

“The Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development is in the right direction in providing adequate and affordable housing to fellow Filipinos,” Benitez during the MOA signing held at DHSUD Central Office in Quezon City.

Based on the agreement, Bacolod City will start complying with the requirements for a developmental loan from Pag-IBIG Fund to fund the land development and housing construction.

For its part, Pag-IBIG Fund CEO Marilene Acosta has committed to providing financial and technical assistance that DHSUD and the city government may need for the project.

“We fully welcome the direction of DHSUD in fast-tracking, coordinating, and bringing together all sectors’ concerns towards the immediate implementation of housing projects in the regions,” Acosta said.

As the first GFI to allot funds for the new housing project, Pag-IBIG Fund shall extend individual housing loans to target beneficiaries pre-qualified and selected by the LGU. (PNA)

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