Marawi ‘ground zero’ rebuilding hits a snag

MANILA The groundbreaking for the most affected area (MAA) of war-torn Marawi City will not push through as scheduled this July due to unsuccessful negotiation with Bangon Marawi Consortium (BMC), Task Force Bangon Marawi (TFBM) said on Thursday.

TFBM chairperson and housing czar Eduardo Del Rosario said the groundbreaking would instead be held most likely towards the end of August.

Unfortunately, we could not meet the indicative timeline because we had an unsuccessful negotiation with the Bangon Marawi Consortium, del Rosario said during the Bangon Marawi press briefing in MalacaAang.

He said the BMC, the first proponent, failed to comply with some requirements particularly on technical, financial and legal capacity.

We would like the first developer, the Bangon Marawi Consortium. Unfortunately, it did not materialize, del Rosario said.

Del Rosario said the Selection Board Committee is now talking with the second proponent Power Construction Corporation of China or Power China as possible developer of the 250-hectare most affected area comprising 24 barangays of Marawi City.

He said the rebuilding will not be solely undertaken by Power China, a wholly state-owned company established in 2011.

We do not know the local companies that will be tapped by Power China to meet that 75-25 qualification. So definitely, it will not be solely undertaken by Power China, the TFBM head said.

TFBM secretary-general Falconi Millar said Power China has requested for more time to come up with an intelligent proposal with regard to technical submissions.

We are still negotiating with Power China with regards to the modality of our joint venture agreement, Millar said.

Millar said Swiss challenge remains a parameter that the task force will use to ensure transparency in the selection of best developer.

If and when, there will be a successful negotiation with Power China, this will be subjected to Swiss challenge and all interested proponents may participate in this Swiss challenge, Millar said.

Despite the delay, del Rosario expressed optimism that the target date of completion of the Marawi's ground zero rebuilding will be finished by last quarter of 2021.

It will not affect our target date of completion which is the last quarter of 2021. So we are on time, he said.

Del Rosario said selection of the best developer in line with the government's goal to provide better and livable community for Marawi residents whose properties were heavily damaged by a five-month war between government troops and ISIS-inspired Maute terrorist group in 2017.

As far as the task force is concerned and all the agencies and departments under it, we are all one in saying that we are doing what is best for the Marawi City and the people or the Maranaos, he assured. (PNA)

Source: Philippine News Agency

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