By Wilnard Bacelonia

MARAWI CITY, March 18 (PIA-ICCC) – Task Force Bangon Marawi (TFBM) Chairperson and Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC) Secretary Eduardo del Rosario believes that some internally displaced persons (IDPs) are misinformed about the ongoing rehabilitation and recovery because of some people disseminating wrong information.

Based on Secretary del Rosario’s initial assessment after the first day of the TFBM’s consultation-dialogue today, there are IDPs who were misinformed about the ongoing Marawi rehabilitation and recovery.

“It is because there are people who instigate them, spreading wrong information or what we call fake news. That is why our purpose, once and for all, is to settle issues that need clarification and we think that we have succeeded today,” he said.

Also present during the consultation were Marawi City Mayor Majul Gandamra, TFBM Field Office Manager and HUDCC Assistant Secretary Felix Castro Jr., TFBM Secretary General and National Housing Authority (NHA) General Manager Marcelino Escalada Jr., Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Undersecretary Felicisimo Budiongan, National Commission on Muslim Filipinos (NCMF) Secretary Saidamen Pangarungan, regional officials from Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

The TFBM chair also said that the consultation-dialogue aims to inform the IDPs about the updates and the real situation, the plans and what they can expect from TFBM.

“Today, we have initially identified one of their worries which is the fear that they might not be able to go back to their homes. So, we assured them today that they can visit their homes after the debris clearing, and the DSWD will also give cash assistance,” del Rosario added.

He also appealed to the people and groups spreading wrong information to stop and help in the rehabilitation instead.

“Although it is their right to express what they want, but it’s not helping the rehabilitation of Marawi City. So, I hope they realize that at the end of the day, what we are doing is for the general welfare of everybody and not to satisfy the whims and caprices of very small groups,” he declared.

More than a thousand Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) from the 12 out of 24 barangays of the most affected area (MAA) of this city have assembled at the Lanao del Sur Provincial Capitol Gymnasium today to the start of the two-day Task Force Bangon Marawi (TFBM) consultation-dialogue.

The consultation will continue on Tuesday, March 19, for the displaced residents coming from the 12 remaining barangays of MAA. (WLBacelonia/PIA-ICCC)