Marawi rehabilitation a 'failure,' says civic leader


Posted at Jul 23 2021 05:55 PM

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MANILA - The rehabilitation of Marawi City is a "failure," civic leader Samira Gutoc said Friday ahead of President Rodrigo Duterte's final State of the Nation Address. 

Gutoc, chairperson of the group Ako Bakwit, said the promised monthly visit of Duterte to the battle-worn city did not prosper and there was also no legislated measure for Marawi compensation. 

She said although her group understands that the task force for the rehabilitation was limited by quarantine restrictions, the government should have prioritized issuing building permits, land titling and distribution because "local traditions" are disorderly. 


Marawi rehabilitation a 'failure,' says civic leader 1
This photo taken on May 23, 2021 shows Philippine soldiers looking over workers constructing a building which was a main battleground in 2017 when Islamic State-inspired Muslim militants laid siege to the southern Philippine city of Marawi, resulting in a five-month campaign that claimed more than 1,000 lives until government troops re-took control. (Photo by Ferdinandh CABRERA / AFP)

"It’s basic to us na maibalik na lang sana yung indibidwal to build back if government can’t," she told ANC's Headstart.

(It's basic to us to just have the people return to build back if government can't.)

According to Gutoc, it would have been better if the military's engineering brigade could step in to fast track rebuilding Marawi and if more contractors can help out to erect permanent shelters for the people.

She said very few of the 80,000 internally displaced individuals have been able to go back to their homes in the years since the battle tore their city. 

Marawi City was once a bustling Muslim-majority city before it was reduced to rubble following a 5-month war against Islamic State-inspired homegrown terrorists in May 2017.