A year after Marawi crisis, Malacañang 'satisfied' with rehab

MANILA, Philippines – A day before the first anniversary of the Marawi siege, Malacañang said it is satisfied with the rehabilitation of the city so far.

"We are satisfied. The President has full trust in General Del Rosario," said Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque on Tuesday, May 22.

He was referring to housing czar Eduardo del Rosario, who heads the Marawi rehabilitation task force. (LIST: Tasks for China consortium in P17.2-B Marawi contract)

On Wednesday, May 23, it will be one year since terrorists gained control of Marawi City, beginning a 5-month battle with government troops. It will also be a year since President Rodrigo Duterte declared martial law in Mindanao, in response to the siege.

Duterte is set to visit Marawi City soon to mark the crisis' first anniversary, though Roque could not give specifics due to security concerns.

Roque is also expected to hold a press briefing in Marawi City on Thursday, May 24.

'Ahead of schedule'

Roque said Malacañang is pleased that 70% of Marawi residents have returned to the city, occupying temporary or permanent housing built by the government.

"The good news is that, as far as the residents are concerned, 70% of the residents have gone back to their homes. We have provided temporary or permanent homes to 70% of them," he said.

This figure shows rehabilitation efforts are making good progress, said Duterte's spokesman.

"In a year's time, we are even ahead of schedule when it comes to rebuilding the communities," he said. (READ: Marawi rehabilitation won't repeat Typhoon Yolanda mistakes – NEDA)

Roque, however, acknowledged that it will take more time to rebuild the most affected portion of Marawi City, the so-called "main battle area."

He appealed for understanding as rehabilitation efforts need to follow a process and will thus take time. (READ: Messy land ownership in Marawi complicates rehabilitation– Rappler.com

Pia Ranada

Pia Ranada covers the Office of the President and Bangsamoro regional issues for Rappler. While helping out with desk duties, she also watches the environment sector and the local government of Quezon City. For tips or story suggestions, you can reach her at pia.ranada@rappler.com.

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