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Thursday, December 8, 2022

TFBM chief backs substitute Marawi compensation bill

QUEZON CITY – Task Force Bangon Marawi (TFBM) Chairman Secretary Eduardo Del Rosario has expressed support to a newly proposed legislation aimed at aiding victims of the 2017 Marawi City siege.

During Tuesday’s online hearing of the House of Representatives Committee on Disaster Resilience on the substitute bill for House Bills Nos. 3418, 3543, and 3922 or the proposed “Marawi Siege Compensation Act,” Secretary Del Rosario briefed lawmakers on the latest developments regarding the Islamic City’s rebuilding process.

He likewise assured the House committee, chaired by Rep. Lucy Torres-Gomez, that the TFBM is on track to complete all infrastructure projects by December 2021.

“The proposed Compensation Act would pioneer the adoption into law of the foregoing basic principles and guidelines on the rights of the affected individuals or groups to a remedy in our jurisdiction, even in cases where the State is not at fault – as in this case,” the TFBM chair said in a signed letter to Rep. Torres-Gomez.

The proposed substitute bill is being pushed by Rep. Mohamad Khalid Dimaporo of Lanao del Norte.

“It would blaze the trail for future laws granting appropriate remedies and/or compensation to victims of armed conflicts which sporadically occur in our country,” added Secretary Del Rosario, also head of the Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) .

Meanwhile, Marawi City Mayor Majul Gandamra highlighted the importance of close coordination between the TFBM and the local government unit to ensure the rise of the Islamic City.

Mayor Gandamra likewise trumpeted the TFBM chief’s effective leadership, which is why he and most local leaders support Secretary Del Rosario’s confirmation as DHSUD secretary.

“Secretary Del Rosario showed nothing but professionalism and compassion in his job as chairman of the TFBM and the people of Marawi have seen and felt all the unwavering support that the task force has shown to all of us,” Mayor Gandamra stated in a letter to Senate President Vicente Sotto III, chairman of the Commission on a Appointments.

Contrary to what is being peddled by critics of the Duterte administration, Mayor Gandamra said that Marawi City is continuously rising as evidenced by vibrant economic activities and the scaled-up reconstruction works within the most affected area (MAA) or “ground zero.”    

The TFBM is composed of 56 government implementing agencies.

Ground works for various major infrastructure projects within MAA went on full blast last month immediately after the easing down of the quarantine period. President Rodrigo Roa Duterte approved the release of P3.56 billion for Marawi projects last April and May.

Earlier, a resolution was passed by the Sangguinang Panglunsod of Marawi in support to the confirmation of Secretary Del Rosario as housing czar. 

A total of 53 barangay chairpersons also signed a manifesto endorsing Secretary Del Rosario.

The Marawi Sultanate League, headed by Chairman Nasser Sampaco, had likewise aired its unconditional backing of the DHSUD chief.

Upon his ad interim appointment as DHSUD chief last January, major developers’ groups in the country also cited Secretary Del Rosario for his transparent and pro-active leadership. (DHSUD/PIA ICIC)