The rehabilitation of the war-torn Marawi City is being done according to the set timeline, Task Force Bangon Marawi (TFBM) chairperson Secretary Eduardo del Rosario said on Wednesday.
At the Laging Handa press briefing, del Rosario said the development of various public infrastructures in the most devastated area in Marawi City cannot be done without the assurance that it is already free from unexploded bombs.
The TFBM has conducted the debris management or bomb clearing for about two years and four months, he said, which was completed in February last year.
“So, hindi natin puwedeng simulan ang public infrastructure, kapag ang mga bomba na five to ten meters below the ground ay nandoon pa rin for safety consideration (we cannot start the construction of public infrastructure if the bombs are 5 to 10 meters below the ground, there is still for safety consideration),” del Rosario said.
He added that the full-blast constructions and repair of public facilities in the area have started between July and August last year.
“About 30 projects will be completed by December and by the first quarter and second quarter of next year,” he said.
Del Rosario noted the government has more than 60 projects in the pipeline.
He assured the Marawi rehabilitation is still on track with more projects will be completed by December this year.
The government is eyeing to finish the vertical and horizontal public infrastructures by the end of President Rodrigo Duterte’s term on June 30 next year.
Assuming that 95 percent will be completed by June 30, del Rosario assured that the funds intended for the remaining 5 percent of the project will be consumed by the implementing agencies.
“So, ina-assure natin ang lahat, dahil ang pondo, ipinasok natin sa lahat ng ahensiya at sila ang nagpapagawa ngayon, wala tayong problema regarding its completion (So we assure everyone since the funds are downloaded in all implementing agencies, we don’t have any problem regarding its completion),” he added.
The TFBM has previously turned over 370 permanent housing units to the city’s internally displaced families.
Over the weekend, another 250 permanent shelters were awarded to the displaced families who were previously residing in the danger zones of the city’s most affected area (MAA).
Some displaced families are currently residing in 4,800 temporary housing units while waiting for the MAA’s full rehabilitation.
“And out of our target of 2,800, almost 80 to 90 percent will be completed by December. So, the remaining 10 t0 20 percent will be completed by the first quarter of 2022,” del Rosario said.
Del Rosario said MAA, the city’s central business district, was divided into nine sectors as the government gradually opened the area for its residents.
“So, sectors 1 to 3, since July of last year, we allowed them already to go back provided they have a building permit from the local government unit. And then starting this month, October from sectors 4 to 7, we have allowed them to repair or reconstruct their housing units also,” he said.
But, he added, some of the residents don’t have enough money to build back their houses.
Residents are still waiting for the approval of the proposed Marawi compensation bill in both Upper and Lower Houses of the Congress, he said.
Del Rosario also reported that the government continues to support the conflict-affected residents.
“We have provided livelihood assistance last year with the amount of PhP73,000 for all families living in the most affected area. And for those living outside the most affected area, each family was given PhP10,000 each,” he said.
Apart from financial aid they could use for livelihood, del Rosario said residents are also provided with medical, agricultural, and food assistance.
The TFBM was created under Administrative Order 3 issued by Duterte on June 28, 2017, following the declaration of the government’s triumph against the terrorist groups.
The task force facilitates the rehabilitation, recovery, and reconstruction efforts and helps displaced families recover. (PNA)