Private schools appeal for inclusion in Marawi rehab plan

Ron Gagalac, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 25 2017 05:21 PM

Army soldiers put-out a fire in one of the ruined buildings in the city as leaders of the 24 barangays located in what was once the main battle area in Marawi City visit ground zero on November 21, 2017 for the first time since the siege erupted last May. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News

Owners of private schools in Marawi have banded together and called on government to include them in the rehabilitation plan for the war-torn city.
"That’s one of the problems Marawi schools are facing. We lost everything…For how many months that we have been attending Bangon Marawi [meetings], we have not heard any plans for private schools," said Dayalyn Tingaraan, owner of Sen. Ninoy Aquino College Foundation.

Photos from Tingaraan showed schools sustained massive damage, with the war displacing over 15,000 students. According to Tingaraan, there were more private schools than public schools combined in Marawi.

"The owners just want government to listen to us, and also consider us. We are also victims," Tingaraan said.

Schools will play an important part in the campaign against terrorism, and students might be led astray if they have no schools to go to, she claimed.

By December, thousands of individuals who lost their homes in Marawi are expected to return as construction of resettlement areas near completion, said the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).

DPWH Sec. Mark Villar said construction is in full swing for the first 500 units of temporary shelters.

"Gusto ko siguraduhin na on target ang DPWH, full blast na ang construction dito," he said.

Villar said starting Monday, post construction assessment teams will inspect the main battle area to ascertain the magnitude of damage and the cost needed to rehabilitate the area.