By Emmie V. Abadilla
San Miguel Corporation, through its Private Infra Development Corp (PDIC), will advance the payment for the unpaid portion of the properties which the government expropriated as right of way (ROW) for the construction of the Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway (TPLEX).
Earlier, landowners complained that government has yet to fully pay them for their properties.
The government, for its part, stated that a large part of the problem stemmed rom incomplete documents which claimants submitted. This delayed the review and payment process.
“Our wish is for the situation to be remedied as soon as possible,” SMC president and chief operating officer Ramon S. Ang yesterday announced in a statement issued to the press.
“We will advance the payment for the government. We understand the plight of the landowners, and also recognize the position of the government. But we would like to assure them that we are ready to resolve this issue and expedite payment,” he added.
SMC is working with the government, through the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), to quickly resolve all issues and help them deliver on their commitment so that claimants are finally compensated.
For some time now, the landowners, whose lands were acquired from 2015 to 2017, had been demanding full payment for their properties from the government agency.
Initially, and as mandated by the Right of Way (ROW) acquisition law, they had received partial payment for their properties, including full payment for any structure, trees, and crops.
This payment was advanced by PIDC to pave the way for the infrastructure project’s construction.
However, the process of fully acquiring the lands has taken longer.
As mandated by law, an independent appraiser, the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP), had to undertake valuation of the properties. This was completed in June 2017.