Angeles City Mayor Carmelo “Pogi” Lazatin Jr. has appealed anew to the Clarkhills Properties Corporation to defer its plan to demolish some 500 residential houses in Barangays Cuayan and Anunas until all affected families will be properly relocated as agreed during their dialogue to keep the peace.
In a letter dated October 13, 2023 to Oscar Torralba, owner of the Clarkhills Properties in the said barangays, Mayor Lazatin said the Angeles City government was “left blinsided” by the letter of Sheriff III Elizabeth Marasigan, of the Department of Agrarian Reform Adjudication Board (received by Lazatin on October 13, 2023) which notified him the demolition will be implemented on October 16-19, 2023, in Barangay Cuayan at 9am; and on November 6-10, 2023, at the same time in Barangay Anunas.
These scheduled demolitions run counter with the agreement reached during a dialogue brokered by Mayor Lazatin between the tenants and the Clarkhills management.
On September 15, 2023, Mayor Lazatin said “it was agreed upon that the scheduled demolition will be put on hold and status quo shall be observed until such a time that Clarkhills presents their development timeline to the city and the relocation and distribution of financial assistance to the affected families to be provided by Clarkhills, has been carried out.”
Lazatin also offerred to purchase the property occupied by the tenants under the city’s socialized housing project to be awarded to the existing tenants.
“Considering the terms agreed upon during our dialogue, this office is left blindsided by the aforementioned letter announcing the continuation of the demolition,” said Mayor Lazatin. Mayor Lazatin urged Torralba and Sheriff Marasigan to sit down anew in the negotiating table in a bid to resolve the impasse.
Mayor Lazatin said the tenants should be relocated and given assistance so that they can restart their respective lives.
Moreso, he instructed the Angeles City Human Settlements and Urban Development Office (ACHSUDO) through Atty. Arvin “Pogs” Suller to conduct thorough mapping and tagging of the affected families to ensure that all of them would be properly identified and no one will be left behind as the city government strives to provide the best possible assistance to them.
Mayor Lazatin also directed the Philippine National Police (PNP) to stand down as Angeles City exerts all efforts to broker a win-win solution for the indignant tenants and Clarkhills management.
“I already directed the ACPO to stand down and enforce maximum tolerance in dealing with the issue. I do not want any of my constituents to get hurt in a demolition that may go haywire. I am appealing on Clarkhills and DARAB to sit down anew and thresh things out amicably,” said Mayor Lazatin.