MANILA—Residents of the most affected area, previously the main battle area, in Marawi may go back to their homes in late 2019, an official of the Task Force Bangon Marawi (TFBM) said Saturday.
"We have validated the residents in the most affected area and what we’re saying to them is . . . let’s say horizontal development begins June next year after the debris clearing, let’s say 6 months for horizontal development, the residents of the affected area can return 18 months from now, late 2019," TFBM spokesperson Asec. Toby Purisima told radio DZMM.
"They can already rebuild their homes. We assure them that no private property will be taken forcibly by government and that the relatively undamaged properties will not be touched."
Purisima said the task force has an indicative budget of P75 billion, of which P22 billion is eyed for the rehabilitation of the most affected area, while P53 billion is allotted for the repair of villages outside the most affected area.
He added that they have yet to hire a contractor to rebuild the city.
"Meron pong lumulatang ngayon na tinatawag na developer na sinabing Chinese consortium pero nais ko lamang po iklaro na hindi pa po ito pinal. Hindi pa sila napipili. Meron pa po tayong tinatawag na Swiss challenge na kahit sinong consortium or contractor ay maaaring mag-propose ng mas mababang amount," he said.
"Pwede nilang tapatan 'yung P22 billion na indicative budget ngayon. Pwede nilang babaan ito, 'yun naman ang nature ng Swiss challenge."
TFBM chair Eduardo Del Rosario earlier said the awarding of the contract for the rehabilitation of the most affected area and the groundbreaking will be on May 31 and June 7.