Many Marawi IDPs in temporary shelters end up paying rent, facing eviction

Franck Dick Rosete

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Many Marawi IDPs in temporary shelters end up paying rent, facing eviction

APPEAL. Asnaynie Macabando, a representative of the women sector of IDPs, shares the plight of displaced families in Marawi's temporary shelters during a public hearing in Marawi City on Tuesday, June 4.

Franck Dick Rosete/Rappler

Some landowners start asking the Marawi siege's displaced families to move out

MARAWI, Philippines – Seven years after the battle between government forces and the Maute Group in Marawi City, thousands of those who survived the fierce fighting still face uncertainty and hardships despite government promises of rehabilitation. With the expiration of contracts for the use of parcels of land for temporary shelters, many of the city’s internally displaced persons (IDPs) found themselves forced to pay rent, worsening their already difficult situation.

Some are even facing eviction as a result of the expired contracts, Marawi Consensus Group (MCG) leader Drieza Lininding told Rappler on Wednesday, June 5.

Lininding said the expired contracts for land use for the temporary shelters were between the Task Force Bangon Marawi (TFBM) and the landowners.

People, Person, Adult
CONCERNS. Bataan 1st District Representative Geraldine Roman speaks to displaced persons at the public hearing on Tuesday, June 4, about their livelihood concerns. Franck Dick Rosete/Rappler

Officials said the ongoing challenges confronting the IDPs showed the complexities of post-conflict recovery and the need for timely and adequate support to help displaced communities rebuild.

Rent and eviction threat

When the contracts expired, Lininding said, there were instances when IDPs were asked to sign agreements with provisions that stated they could be asked to leave the properties anytime.

Survivors of the five-month-long battle in 2017 appealed to the government on Tuesday, June 4, to provide them permanent housing, saying they ended up paying rent, from P500 to P2,000, for pieces of land where the government erected temporary shelters.

Even worse, some landowners have asked displaced families to move out, according to Felix Castro, the presidential adviser for Marawi rehabilitation.

Castro said about 4,916 IDPs were still living in temporary shelters in barangays Sagonsonan, Rorogagus, Buganga, Dulay, and Patani in Marawi.

He said some of the IDPs in Sagonsonan were asked to pay rent.

Lanao del Sur Governor Mamintal Adiong Jr. told a news conference that the five-year contracts with the private landowners had already expired, and as a result, some are now paying rent for the land use.

Adiong called on the national government to expedite rehabilitation work in Marawi and allow displaced residents, especially those from the so-called most affected areas (MAAs), comprising 24 villages, to return to their respective barangays so they could rebuild.

Lanao del Sur 1st District Representative Zia Alonto Adiong said the Marawi City government, along with concerned barangay chairpersons, initially intervened and tried to talk landowners into agreeing to extend the contracts. He said some agreed to the new arrangements but this time, with the IDPs.

Compensation not enough

Meanwhile, Asnaynie Macabando, a representative of the women’s sector of IDPs in temporary shelters, expressed concern over the release of the Marawi siege compensation claims

She noted that some of the Marawi siege survivors died without receiving any compensation based on the Marawi Siege Victims Compensation Act of 2022.

“Another question is, what’s the amount we could get? Is it enough to build houses on ‘Ground Zero’? It’s not,” said Macabando as she held back tears during a public hearing called by the ad hoc committee on Marawi rehabilitation and victims’ compensation at the capitol gymnasium in Marawi.


Macabando said many of the IDPs have been struggling with paying rent and utility bills. With decent housing, she said they could focus solely on improving their incomes.

Representative Adiong said he and Senator Ronald dela Rosa, chairman of the Senate special committee on Marawi City rehabilitation and victims’ compensation, agreed to review the compensation act.

The MCG earlier said the compensation packages for the IDPs were not enough, “considering the cost of construction materials and inflation today.”

INSPECT. Lanao del Sur 1st District Representative Zia Alonto Adiong (right), Misamis Oriental 2nd District Representative Yevgeny Vincente Emano (left), and 1-Rider Party List Representative Ramon Rodrigo Gutierrez (center) check a damaged establishment in Marawi City, on Tuesday, June 4. Franck Dick Rosete/Rappler

Adiong, who chairs the committee, said his panel would need to collaborate with the House committee on housing and urban development to address the Marawi housing problem.

Bataan 1st District Representative Geraldine Roman said the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) should step in and provide livelihood training for the IDPs, especially the women and youth. Another lawmaker, Margarita Nograles of PBA Party List, said the IDPs can avail of the government aid program, Ayuda sa Kapos ang Kita Program (AKAP).

Housing challenges

Officials at the public hearing noted that among the challenges in the rehabilitation are housing, electricity, water supply, and sewerage systems.

Al-Khwarizmi Indanan, regional manager of the National Housing Authority (NHA) in the Zamboanga Peninsula and head of the Marawi Project Management Office, said 1,500 housing units out of the targeted 1,800 for the Marawi siege victims have already been completed.

Castro said some of the housing units remain unoccupied, but a list of beneficiaries for the housing program has already been endorsed.

Indanan said 150 housing units more would be built in the city for IDPs who shared or rented houses before the 2017 Marawi siege. –

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