Foreign Assistance:

Resettlement of Panama's Displaced El Chorrillo Residents

NSIAD-91-63BR: Published: Dec 20, 1990. Publicly Released: Jan 2, 1991.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO evaluated the Agency for International Development's (AID) progress in resettling Panama City residents who were displaced as a result of U.S. military action in December 1989, focusing on: (1) the living conditions at a temporary housing facility; (2) the status of the program to find permanent replacement housing for the displaced residents; and (3) factors that could impede further progress in providing permanent homes.

GAO found that: (1) the living conditions at the temporary housing facility generally met acceptable standards defined by international refugee organizations; (2) food services appeared adequate, living space, toilet, and bath areas were clean and sanitary, and medical care was available; (3) the two international organizations that inspected the quarters prior to occupancy concluded that the size of the living quarters was adequate for a temporary facility; (4) AID reported that, 6 months after its permanent housing program began, it completed delivery of 142 of the estimated 2,200 replacement homes needed for displaced residents; (5) AID reported that it corrected problems that initially slowed the program, housing units would soon become more rapidly available, and the temporary camps could close by March 1991; (6) AID addressed factors that impeded progress and assigned an AID engineer to work with housing contractors and the Panamanian utility company to correct development problems; (7) AID and the Panamanian government were still working to determine the number of eligible persons and households that would need housing; and (8) AID resolved a problem involving the funding difference between the estimated 2,200 homes that are needed and the 2,000 homes that AID originally funded.

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