The Manila Times : 'Marawi City will be rebuilt' – BBM

2 April 2022

By Catherine S. Valente | The Manila Times

PRESIDENTIAL candidate Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. expressed confidence that the war-ravaged city of Marawi can be rebuilt before President Rodrigo Duterte steps down in June.

Speaking to reporters on Thursday, Marcos said that Duterte is already completing the rehabilitation of Marawi City.

"Ginagawa na 'yun (It's already being done), tinatapos na ni Pangulong Duterte (President Duterte is finishing it)," Marcos said in a chance interview when asked if he would prioritize the reconstruction and rehabilitation of Marawi should he win in May elections.

Earlier, Department of Human Settlement and Urban Development chief Eduardo del Rosario said 95 percent of the rehabilitation work in the war-torn city would be finished by the end of Duterte's term on June 30.

"I am certain that we can finish at least 95 percent of all major infra projects by June 2022, and I can assure everyone that the few remaining projects will surely be completed because they are already funded and for implementation by the concerned agencies," del Rosario said.

"We expect that by January (2022), hundreds or even a thousand can already start the construction or repair of their houses," he added.

In a separate interview on Thursday, Marcos admitted that fixing the destroyed infrastructure was really difficult.

"Actually, may nakapag-report sa akin. Ang pagpapaayos naman kasi, inaayos muna 'yung basic infrastructure ng nasira. Mahirap 'yun kaya natatagalan (Actually, someone has reported to me, Reconstruction isn't easy, they're repairing the basic infrastructure of what was damaged. That takes time because it's difficult)," Marcos said.

"Pero I'm sure kapag natapos na iyon (But I'm sure after that is finished) we can rebuild structures at magiging mas maganda (and it will be better)," he added.

It was on May 23, 2017 when the Maute group, which has expressed alliance with the Islamic State, raided Marawi's town center and occupied the city.

Government forces successfully liberated the city by October of the same year, but it came at the loss of lives and infrastructure being destroyed.

The five-month siege led to the death of 168 soldiers and police officers, along with 900 Maute militants, and scores of civilians.