Mayors, Gov to discuss “no dwelling zone” policy

A roundtable discussion on the “no-dwelling zone” (NDZ) policy will be conducted tomorrow April 11, with Yolanda affected LGUs.  Expected to attend are the mayors of the Yolanda affected LGU’s with Task Force Paglig-on and the protection cluster.  Venue is the Crown Regency Hotel, Osmeña Blvd., Cebu City from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The discussion will primarily tackle the NDZ policy and its impact on the affected communities. It aims to delve into the possible problems that may arise from the policy’s implementation and the possible solutions to address such problems. It will also take up housing, land and property rights, and UN guiding principles on internal displacement among others.

Governor Hilario P. Davide III and Secretary Panfilo Lacson, Jr., Presidential Assistant for Rehabilitation and Recovery have been invited to give their inputs on the new policy.

NDZ modifies the “40 meter-no-build zones” policy of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR). It aims to ensure the residents’ transfer to safer grounds. Lacson said the DENR policy restricts the construction of houses in coastline areas. However, tourism-related infrastructures are allowed so long as they are calamity-resilient.

The protection cluster, led by the Commission on Human Rights of the Philippines and UN Commissioner for Refugees will facilitate the discussion. The invited 15 municipal mayors and one (1) city mayor will primarily lead the discussions. Various UN partners and emergency assistance teams will participate as well. Lianne Llesol