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Urban Demolitions – Residents Block EDSA

July 13, 2011

As we drove by an urban poor community in metro Manila the other day, a friend started to tell me about the communities continuing struggle against demolitions.

The government had recently sold a plot of land to one of the Ayala corporations (one of the wealthiest Filipinos). The corporation is hoping to develop a central business district in the location.

However, six thousands families lived in the community that had just been sold.

The national housing authority offered to relocate the families to the outskirts of the city, however there was apparently no electricity or running water, it was far from jobs, and additionally it was on a fault line. The families refused the offer.

About 3 months ago, the Philippines National Police and a large demolition crew were sent in to tear all the houses down.

The people tried to block them, but the police was able to clear the way for the demolition team.

As the demolition team began to demolish their homes, some of the community members began building a barricade on EDSA (one of the main roads into downtown Manila).

Here’s a video produced by May Day Multimedia about the demolitions. The video’s in Filipino so the translation for captions is below.

As a result of the communities resistance, and the governments fear that more people would join the resistance, the president put a hold on the demolition of the remaining houses.

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From → urban poor

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