2,894 Isabela residents get aid, others not on NHA list complain

Board Member Rita Gatuslao (left) distributing the NHA aid in Isabela, Tuesday, June 7.*Richard Malihan photo

The Negros Occidental provincial government distributed P14.4 million from the National Housing Authority (NHA) to 2,894 residents of Isabela town who lost their homes to typhoon “Odette” at rites held Tuesday, July 7.

The NHA Special Emergency Housing Assistance Program aid of P5,000 each was distributed at the Isabela Municipal Covered Court and Isabela Cultural Center, which was attended by Board Member Rita Gatuslao and Isabela Mayor Irene Montilla.

Only those whose houses were totally destroyed are covered by the NHA aid.

Numerous Isabela residents who said they were also victims of the typhoon complained that they were not included in the list of beneficiaries.

Montilla said 14,000 households in Isabela were affected by “Odette”, some with houses destroyed and others with damaged homes.

All were listed, but after validation only 2,894 were included in the NHA list of recipients, she said.

”We have complained about it a long time ago,” Montilla said.

She said one of the reasons for Isabela’s getting less “Odette” aid could be because the opposition-controlled Sangguniang Bayan did not declare a state of calamity despite a resolution requesting for it from the Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office.

Some of the typhoon victims received assistance from other donations, including those from the private sector, Montilla added.*

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