Sen. JV: Give Marawi IDP cash to re­build their homes

Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro - - Top Stories - By Jig­ger J. Jerusalem Cor­re­spon­dent

IN or­der not to worsen the suf­fer­ing of dis­placed Marawi res­i­dents, it would be best if the gov­ern­ment will just give them cash to im­me­di­ately help re­build homes de­stroyed by the fight­ing, a law­maker said.

Sen­a­tor Joseph Vic­tor ‘JV’ Ejercito said his com­mit­tee is con­sid­er­ing that op­tion as it would be ad­van­ta­geous to both the gov­ern­ment and in­ter­nally dis­placed per­sons (IDPs) of Marawi.

Ejercito chairs the Se­nate com­mit­tee on ur­ban plan­ning, hous­ing and re­set­tle­ment.

Ejercito, who was here to at­tend the grad­u­a­tion rites of a state-run univer­sity re­cently, said he doesn’t want the Marawi res­i­dents ex­pe­ri­ence the same plight of the sur­vivors of past calami­ties like Pablo and Yolanda who un­til now have not been prop­erly re­lo­cated be­cause of the de­lay of the gov­ern­ment in fin­ish­ing the hous­ing projects for them.

“One op­tion is to pro­vide fi­nan­cial as­sis­tance to the Marawi vic­tim to [re­build] their homes, to make it faster. If you rely on gov­ern­ment to build the houses, it would take years. Just look what hap­pened to Yolanda and Pablo. Un­til now ‘di pa rin tapos (it has not been com­pleted yet),” he said.

By pro­vid­ing the Marawi res­i­dents with the fi­nan­cial as­sis­tance to re­con­struct their dwellings, the sen­a­tor said it would sat­isfy the need of the IDPs and dis­cour­age them from join­ing ex­trem­ist groups.

“I think it can even pave the way to last­ing peace. The ex­trem­ist will lose an in­stru­ment, an is­sue [they can use to re­cruit], if you re­ha­bil­i­tate Marawi prop­erly,” Ejercito added.

Mean­while, in an in­ter­view dur­ing his lat­est visit to Marawi, Ed­uardo del Rosario, the Task Force Ban­gon Marawi (TBFM) head has as­sured that the gov­ern­ment will not take away pri­vate lots, both ti­tled and non­ti­tled, from their own­ers.

The TBFM chief calls these fears of the Marawi res­i­dents as “spec­u­la­tion” and “has not ba­sis at all.”

Del Rosario said the af­fected civil­ians will be al­lowed to build struc­tures on their lots and that TBFM is cre­at­ing a land dis­pute ar­bi­tra­tion com­mit­tee to ad­dress the is­sue of mul­ti­ple claimants on a sin­gle pri­vate prop­erty.

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