Press Release
October 2, 2020

Tolentino pushes realignment of DILG's resettlement funds to DHSUD under 2021 budget

Senator Francis 'Tol' Tolentino is pushing for the realignment of the entire resettlement program funds placed under the Department of Interior and Local Government's (DILG) proposed 2021 budget to the newly formed Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD).

During Thursday's budget deliberations for DILG's proposed P243-billion budget under the submitted 2021 National Expenditure Program (NEP), Tolentino called out Interior Secretary Eduardo An~o for including a portion of the agency's allocation that is "beyond the purview" of its competency since it has something to do with housing.

Tolentino was referring to the agency's P87.289-million allocation for its program on Capacitating Local Government Units (LGUs) on Resettlement Governance or also known as the Resettlement Government Assistance Fund (RGAF).

Tolentino suggested that DILG's RGAF should be transferred to DHSUD, noting that the program was spearheaded prior to the formal creation of the housing department and only creates duplication and redundancy of tasks.

"Isn't it the function of the NHA?" Tolentino asked An~o.

For his part, An~o agreed with Tolentino's proposal, saying he's in favor of realigning RGAF to DHSUD but insisted that the said funds are not solely for relocation but also include other programs for governance reforms and resettlement matters.

Tolentino also emphasized the need to realign the more than P10-million Muslim Resettlement Relocation Services Fund from DILG to DHSUD for the war-torn Marawi City.

The senator noted that Housing Sec. Eduardo Del Rosario's confirmation before the powerful Commission on Appointments (CA) is currently "hanging in the balance" due to his department's alleged non-focus or lack of resources as far as housing is concerned.

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