QUEZON CITY – Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) Secretary Eduardo D. Del Rosario on Sunday said he welcomes more queries from lawmakers during the resumption of deliberations for his ad interim appointment next week as an opportunity to clarify issues and address the disinformation being peddled by some interest groups.

Secretary Del Rosario said he views the second round of Commission on Appointments deliberation as an opportunity to “finally clear the air” on several issues, particularly regarding his role as chairman of the Task Force Bangon Marawi (TFBM) and the progress of the rehabilitation. 

“I thank our lawmakers for giving me this opportunity to finally clear the air and focus on our pressing mandate of providing decent and affordable shelters and developing resilient and sustainable communities for the underprivileged and low-income Filipinos,” he also said. 

Secretary Del Rosario added “with regards to Marawi, I reiterate that we will finish the rehabilitation of public infrastructures within the term of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte. This is in compliance to the specific instruction of the President who said ‘I will see to it that Marawi will rise as a prosperous city again.’”   

The TFBM chairman maintained that the massive rehabilitation of war-torn Marawi City is on track, citing the ongoing full-blast reconstruction works on at least 10 infrastructure projects within the most affected area. Apart from this, social interventions like provision of livelihood and financial assistance to the affected residents are continuing. 

On the other hand, Secretary Del Rosario stressed that under the Duterte administration, government housing agencies have topped previous administrations’ annual production of housing units –building an average of more than 200,000 yearly from 2016 to 2019.

“We have started laying down the solid foundations for the future of the country’s housing sector through transparency and in close collaboration with our stakeholders, particularly the private sector,” the DHSUD chief said. 

Last Wednesday, San Juan Rep. Ronnie Zamora, vice chairman of the CA, motioned to suspend Secretary Del Rosario’s confirmation, citing more members of the House of Representatives want to ask the DHSUD chief regarding “substantial issues.” 

Senators Panfilo Lacson, Grace Poe and Ramon Revilla Jr. supported Zamora’s move. 

Sen. Francis Tolentino, chairman of the Senate Committee on Urban Planning, Housing and Resettlement, scheduled the next hearing next week.