CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – A group of displaced residents from Marawi City condemned on Friday the alleged harassment and surveillance by the government to silence them from expressing their sentiments to the media.
Tindeg Ranao chairperson Aida Ibrahim said couple Rohaina and Olawan Magarang were reportedly told by the camp administrator at the Sarimanok Tent Shelter II not to talk to the media after a television report aired them on May 23, the first anniversary of the Marawi siege.
Ibrahim said the couple was only making an appeal to the government to allow them to return to their homes in Marawi.
She said the Magarangs had been obedient with tent shelter rules but they opposed the policy for them to ask permission from the camp manager first before granting interviews to the press.
Because of that aired interview, she said, the couple and their family were in danger of being booted out of the temporary dwelling site.
“They (Magarangs) are on the verge of being driven out of the tent shelter. They are being asked of barangay certificate and profile but they could not give them since their village chairman did not issue them said documents. What they have is the personal information sheet stating their address in Moncado Colony (Marawi) signed by [barangay] chairman Omar on Nov. 2, 2017 at the Barangay Colony Satellite Office in Iligan City,” Ibrahim said.
Tindeg Ranao said they were being singled out by the government when they started to oppose the “undemocratic” recovery plan of the government.
The Duterte government aims to build an ecozone, army camp and military reservation in Marawi City’s ground zero.
“We believe that the planned rehabilitation of Marawi will only bring sustained and massive displacement of the Maranao people, and the exploitation of our resources since the government has offered Marawi to foreign capitalists such US and China. The US has donated $20.9 million and China P390 million for Marawi,” she added.
Ibrahim said the displaced residents will not be stopped as they continue to demand from the government for justice.
“The victims of the Marawi Crisis will continue to ask for justice because we have been suffering for a year in evacuation, temporary and tent shelters. We will keep on launching protest actions in the face of threats from the government,” she said. (davaotoday.com)