COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS
JUNE 12, 2008
CHR MEETS the MMDA, PNP, DSWD, OTHER LGUs OVER FORCED HOUSING EVICTIONS AND OTHER HUMAN RIGHTS ISSUES
The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) is set to meet with DSWD Secretary Esperanza Cabral, PNP Chief Avelino Razon, Jr., MMDA Chairman Bayani Fernando, NHA General Manager Federico Laxa, Quezon City Mayor Feliciano Belmonte, Jr., Chairman Percival Chavez, Presidential Commission on Urban Poor and Executive Director Denis Murphy of the Urban Poor Associates on Tuesday, June 17, 2008 at 2:00 o’clock in th afternoon at the CHR Conference Room.
According to CHR Chairperson Leila M. De Lima, the dialogue will focus on the several complaints of human rights violations committed in relation to the conduct of several recent housing demolitions of the urban informal settlers.
The CHR Chairperson stressed that the scheduled meeting aims to prevent pre-judgment of any complaints lodged against any official or personnel of the above-mentioned local government units; to clarify government’s practices vis-à-vis the legal and human rights parameters pursuant to domestic laws and international human rights treaties in the enforcement/implementation of forced evictions and housing demolitions and to draw up measures and proper procedures in the conduct of forced evictions and housing demolitions.
At least reported in five (5) reported incidents will be discussed during the meeting:
1- The March 5, 2008 MMDA demolition of the Philcoa Wet and Dry Market, Quezon City
2- The March 5, 2007 demolition at Levi Mariano Avenue, Taguig City
3- The August 2, 2007 MMDA demolition at Culiat Bridge along Mindanao Ave., Quezon City
-4- The May 14, 2008 MMDA demolition at the Balintawak Market, Quezon City and
-5- The May 20, 2008 demolition at Quinta Market, Manila.
Earlier, the CHR issued an Advisory on the Conduct of Forced Evictions and House Demolitions.
Chairperson De Lima urges the full cooperation of the state actors pointing out that cooperation of these agencies will contribute to a better understanding of the various human rights issues involved in forced evictions and housing demolitions, with the aim of safeguarding all the rights involved, particularly the human rights of informal settlers and the urban poor.