By Genalyn Kabiling
The government is bent on dismantling the luxurious houses built by the rich in Boracay as part of the land reform program, President Duterte announced Friday.
The President said the wealthy homeowners should vacate their cottages and chalets so the locals, the real landowners, could have their property back.
“Marami diyan doon ‘yung mga mayaman they have cottages there, they have the chalets, they have the bungalows. It’s not yours to decide. I will destroy your house because the land belongs to the farmers,” he said during the National Information and Communications Technology (ICT) summit in Davao City Friday night.
“You are too presumptuous in this life na kayong ‘yung may mga pera akala ninyo [those wealthy people think] you just can do it left and right the way you please.
Duterte added: “Well, for the next few months until the end of my term — how many months more — ah umalis kayo diyan [leave the area].”
The President affirmed that he plans to distribute the land to the locals, including farmers, as part of the land reform program in Boracay. He said he has no problem if they would sell their property to the businessmen after a few years to earn huge money.
Only a small section of Boracay must be allocated for commercial use, according to the President. He has already left to Congress to delineate the land use of Boracay.
He said Boracay was just a small place that could accommodate a limited number of people. “Fill it with people, fill it with humanity, it cannot stand the ecological load,” he said.
Boracay, once described by Duterte as a cesspool, is currently shut down to tourists amid the rehabilitation works in the island. It is expected to reopen this October.