Marawi City must become the ground zero of the country's Build, Build, Build program, Senator Sonny Angara pointed out today, saying that the bombed out capital of Lanao Sur can be the showcase of the government's promised infrastructure boom.
"From center of fighting, let Marawi be the center of reconstruction in the country," said Angara, who visited and inspected the place last week along with five other senators.
He added that Marawi will be harmed again if it will be left out or left behind the infrastructure boom, of which P1 trillion in public spending, will be spent this year.
"If we're building a subway in Manila, or a long bridge in Cebu, let us also repair the roads and bridges in Marawi, which will cost less," Angara said.
Based on latest estimates, the fighting has left 1,100 dead and over 350,000 displaced.
"Residential areas have been totalled, as the city received the greatest brunt of shelling since Manila in the end of Word War II," the senator said.
Angara has filed P.S. Resolution 592 directing the special committee on Marawi City rehabilitation to zero in on formulating policies to improve the welfare of internally displaced persons.
"Rehabilitation efforts must focus beyond physical infrastructure to include the redevelopment of human capital by ensuring the provision of safe shelters, adequate jobs, sustainable livelihood, and improved well-being to all internally displaced individuals," he said.
Angara, who also served as the keynote speaker of the first commencement exercises held last week at the Mindanao State University (MSU) Main Campus right after the Marawi siege, lauded the university for continuing with their classes amid conflict.
"It was essential that the university remained unharmed and operational amid the siege of Marawi because that meant there was still a place where people could feel safe, where they can be reminded of the beauty of your city, and where they can continue to learn, to educate themselves, and hope for a better future.
"Because of your courage, you have all become inspirations and beacons of hope not only for your communities, not only for your tribes, not only for your school, but for the whole nation," Angara said to the graduating MSU students.
Source: Senate of the Philippines