Thursday, August 23, 2007

Squatter Demolition

I went through mixed emotions as I witnessed the demolition of squatter shanties by my mom's condo in Buendia. Word was, MMDA had given the squatters under the bridge 6 months to relocate. The illegal squatters were causing floods in Buendia towards Taft, making the river beneath them their personal garbage can.

The squatters ran the river's edge. Here, you can see why aside from their being illegal residents, their lack of reverence for the environment causes big problems:

The MMDA trucks came in full force and there was resistance from the squatters. The trucks dredged that thick mud-like mound from the sewers from under the bridge.

The squatters started throwing big rocks, protesting that they were not "mga hayop na ipinagtatabuyan." But then they did not act after the warning and did not take advantage of the proposed relocation to Taguig.

I salute the MMDA for giving the squatters another week to take their shanties down and find a legal place to live. If the residents took their homes down themselves, they get to keep the building materials with them. Whatever MMDA sees by next week, they will demolish.

It was kind of strange to see through the squatters' homes from above--almost like doll-houses, but in a sad and viscious state. It was quite astonishing how so many of them can live in such a small space:

So, here again are the residents taking their shanties apart. My biggest concern is that they were throwing all their garbage into the river again, for the MMDA to clean up. It was very sad to see the river. . .

Indeed a deep-rooted problem, the demolition just spurred the squatters to move to the next-door empty lot:

What do you feel about squatter demolitions?


Lia said...

Frustrating situation. It is a vicious circle. Ideally, they should be educated and made to realize the damage they're doing - but the only way that is going to work is if there is immediate gratification for them - para sa kanila. How do you beat free living space with no rules attached? How do you make the poor care about the environment when they are busy trying to survive?

Anonymous said...

Hi Minotte,

I love your blog. You right so well and your thoughts are just down to the point. How life is in the States and in Manila. I guess it is appreciating what you have and where you are.

Thanks love reading your blog.

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Ricky said...

Just read your blog and wanted to thank you for sharing ur innermost thoughts.
It was beautiful.
Galing naman your pictures - professional!
I hope to see you soon.

minotte's notes said...

PS. Take a closer look at the first pic and check out the sun-bather.

Thanks for stopping by!