The Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) on Friday, July 2, sealed a partnership with other government agencies in an effort to put an end to malpractices in the housing and real estate industry.
By signing a Joint Memorandum Circular (JMC) on the formation of an Anti-Illegal Real Estate Service Practices Inter-Agency Task Force, DHSUD, along with the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Department of Justice (DOJ), the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, the Professional Regulation Commission and other national government agencies, committed to address illegal activities affecting the sector.
The JMC was primarily aimed at synchronizing all government efforts in curtailing such unlawful activities and further bolster coordination at the national, regional and local levels through the inter-agency task force.
Spearheading the key event was DHSUD Secretary Eduardo Del Rosario, who described the signing of the JMC as a huge step in further empowering the government’s campaign against illegal practices in the housing and real estate sector.
“This JMC is being signed today to ensure that unscrupulous individuals or swindlers who are fooling the homebuyers, especially the overseas Filipino workers, are dealt with…we need to exert extra efforts, in coordination with relevant government agencies, especially the DOJ, the DILG, the PNP, the NBI, the LRA and the PRC so that together we can have a stronger effort from the national, regional and local level in ending such unlawful practices,” the housing czar stressed.
“We have to protect the interest of our homebuyers and we need the support of all agencies concerned in addressing concerns related to the real estate industry. With the DILG and DOJ as co-chair of this Task Force, down to the local level, I am confident that we can address and totally eradicate and substantially lessen these scammers in the real estate industry by working together,” he noted.
The JMC was a product of the technical working group headed by DHSUD Undersecretary Meynard Sabili.
“Kapag nagkaroon ng collective effort ang lahat ng mga ahensiya ng gobyerno na miyembro ng Task Force na ito, magiging successful po ang goal natin na mawala ang mga iligal na aktibidad na may kinalaman sa housing and real estate sector,” Usec Sabili said.
Under the JMC, DHSUD will lead the National Task Force, with the DILG and the DOJ serving as co-chairs. The DENR, the National Bureau of Investigation, the Land Registration Authority, the Philippine National Police and the Professional Regulation Commission will act as members.
Joining Secretary Del Rosario at the signing of the JMC at the DHSUD Central Office’s board room were Undersecretary Sabili, Assistant Secretary Leira Buan and other senior department officials.
DILG Secretary Eduardo Año, DOJ Secretary Menardo Guevarra, and representatives from member-departments delivered their messages of support via video conference.
“We (DOJ) commit to assist the Task Force in actively prosecuting those who engage in illegal practices in real estate transactions. We shall devote the service of our department, including the NBI, the LRA and the Public Attorney’s Office, so that we may have a firm stand and compassionate hand to assert the right of every honest and hard-working Filipino in reaching his dream of owning a decent home,” Secretary Guevarra stated.
Secretary Año, meanwhile, stressed that the public can now rest easy knowing that a Task Force against real estate scammers had been formed.
“I commend and appreciate the DHSUD, the DOJ and other member-agencies for working together and pulling efforts and resources in this thrust to help protect our fellowmen from illegal developers, real estate brokers and practitioners, as well as recognizing the central role and commitment of the DILG in ensuring that the provision and agreement highlighted in the JMC will trickle down to the local level,” he noted.
The JMC is another pro-active measure initiated by DHSUD not only to eliminate unscrupulous real estate service practices nationwide but equally important is formulating appropriate policies and regulations, speedy filing and prosecuting cases concerning violations of related regulations, and devising measures to ensure a simple and expeditious process of securing authentication of property titles/ownership, among others, in partnership with other government agencies.
Part of DHSUD’s mandate is to protect the interest and livelihood of licensed brokers and real estate developers, as well as safeguard homebuyers from being duped of their hard-earned money.
Illegal real estate practices violate Presidential Decree No. 957. They also undermine the government’s land and housing program and hinder the objective of enhancing the economic, social and moral condition of Filipinos, especially the underprivileged.
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