Moro leader: Financial assistance, not temporary shelters for Marawi

Nov. 01, 2017

CRAMPED. A Maranao mother rocks her infant child to sleep inside a ​three feet by four feetclassroom at the Al Noor Madrasah School in Barangay Tomas Cabili, Iligan City on Thursday, July 27. At night time, four to five families cramp ​the rooms such as this to sleep, often with the men opting to stay outside to give the women and children more space. The lack of ventilation and personal space has caused common illnesses to spread among the evacuees of the Marawi siege. (Paulo C. Rizal/

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – Instead of requiring displaced Marawi residents to live in transitional shelters, a Moro leader advised government that giving them direct financial assistance would be a better way to facilitate rehabilitation efforts in the war-torn city.

Drieza Lininding, chairperson of the Moro Consensus Group, said Tuesday, October 31, that a financial assistance scheme would helpevacuees could build their own homes on the same area.

“Give them the money and let them build their own homes,” Lininding said, adding that the temporary shelters are not the practical solution to the Marawi problem.

According to Lininding, the financial aid should be based on the assessed damage to the residents’ houses.

That way, he said, the IDPs can restart to live their lives and at the same time it will give the government time to focus on the construction of public infrastructure such as roads, schools and other structures.

The Moro leader’s statement comes after several evacuees from Marawi urged officials to allow them to participate directly in the planning stage and even in the actual rehabilitation.

Besides, the evacuees will find it hard to survive in the temporary shelters since their means of livelihood is in Marawi.

Samira Gutoc-Tomawis, leader of the Ranao Rescue Team, said they would like to be part of the government-created Task Force Bangon Marawi, a body which oversees the rehabilitation efforts of th city.

Local government units of Marawi City and the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao held a People’s Day activity on October 30 to support of the return of the evacuees affected by the conflict which lasted for almost five months.
For Lininding, he said the sooner that the displaced Maranaos can go back to Marawi, the sooner the city could be restored back to normal.

“If it takes 50 years to rebuild Marawi, give the people capital for the businesses, and its recovery period will be cut short,” he said, adding that in three to five years, business establishments will be built and trade and commerce will flourish. (

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