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House panel moots concern over ongoing Marawi rehab, compensation


MARAWI CITY, Lanao del Sur (PIA)--Members of the Ad Hoc Committee on Marawi Rehabilitation and Victims Compensation of the House of Representatives, alongside concerned government agencies, convened for a congressional hearing to go through the updates of the projects implemented in the city here under the recovery, reconstruction, and rehabilitation program. Presided by the committee chairperson and the Lanao del Sur 1st District Representative, Ziaur-Rahman Alonto Adiong, the panel broached the issues lingering until now in the continuing undertakings, among which was the bulk water system project. Lanao del Sur Governor Mamintal Alonto Adiong Jr. personally reported that while many projects have already neared their respective completions, the construction of the said plan is still pending due to an unsettled Memorandum of Agreement between the parties involving the Local Water Utilities Administration (LWUA), Marawi City Water District, and the Armed Forces of the Philippines. With this, he pleaded that this would be speedily finished for the convenience of the internally displaced persons (IDPs) who were eager to begin the repair and reconstruction of their properties inside the most affected area (MAA). “Ang pinakaproblema lang namin ngayon is the bulk water [system project]. Kailangan ang tulong ng members of the ad hoc committee na mapabilis [ito],” said Governor Adiong. (Our major problem now is the bulk water [system project]. We need the help of the members of the ad hoc committee to make [this] fast.) On the other hand, MCB Chairperson Lawyer Maisara Dandamun-Latiph detailed that 12,000 individuals have already booked their appointments until March 2024, which signified their desire to file their compensation for structural or personal and death claims. She also hoped that the same group of lawmakers could help rebuild the city hereby contributing to the success of the board in the form of effective policy and program and apportioning enough budget to allow the warfare victims to save their dignity and have a safe return. Meanwhile, Task Force Bangon Marawi (TFBM) Field Office Manager Felix Castro Jr. reiterated their full support for the implementation of the operations of the MCB. He shared that they already had direct coordination with the board, and their pledged efforts have been continuing to achieve their similar ultimate goal.

Hearing the exchange of discussions, Representative Adiong enjoined his fellow officials to be reminded of the responsibility they bear, especially that longer days, weeks, months, and years since the siege has passed, and yet the locality remains a symbol of devastation and despair. He underlined that the people of this city deserve their unwavering commitment to action, thus, his call to embark together on a journey of compassion, solidarity, and effective governance to ensure that the city rises again from the ashes of destruction. "The longer we wait, the more lives are left in misery, and the greater the burden of those who call Marawi home. The longer we wait, the more opportunities there are for the same evil forces that brought Marawi here," said Representative Adiong. The solon further heartened the committee to listen to the voices of those who have endured unimaginable hardships and sufferings due to the 2017 siege, learn from their experiences, and take their aspirations to heart for them to come up with a collective resolve which is to provide swift and sustainable solutions, including comprehensive rehabilitation and just compensation for the victims of the tragedy. "We must harness this spirit and translate it into meaningful actions as time is running, and we cannot allow the wounds to fester any longer," said Representative Adiong. (CRG/PIA-10/Lanao del Sur)

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