Restoration of normalcy in Marawi City begins

MANILA, Philippines — Of the 95 villages in Marawi City, 33 are heavily damaged by the more than four months of clashes between the government troops and the ISIS-inspired Maute terror group.

In these areas, the structures damaged by the bombs and ammunition can no longer be used.

While in areas considered controlled, the homes of residents remain intact.

The local government is currently processing the return of the evacuated residents back to their homes but the displaced residents still have to undergo a process before returning home like cleaning their communities.

“Mayroon po tayong (we will have)  clustering after the clean-up drive. We would have a phasing, a clustering , pagkatapos po ng restoration ng mga (following restoration of) facilities, government facilities and services within the controlled area including yung mga schools natin (our schools). Pababalikin natin yung mga residente natin dito sa (we can then allow residents to return to their homes in the controlled area,” said Provincial Crisis Management Committee spokesperson Zia Alonto Adiong.

Only 44% of households and establishments in Marawi City are without electricity. These are the villages within the main battle area.

There is also no water supply in the area.

The local government unit of Lanao del Sur explained that once residents in the controlled area can finally return home, they will still have to undergo a screening process with the help of village officials.

The LGU also plans to provide passes to the residents allowed to return home.

“Remember this calamity is not brought about by typhoon or an earthquake. This is a product of an armed conflict and there are several allegedly sympathizers are still outside so of course, we want to secure our residents,” said Adiong.

Meanwhile, residents evacuated from the main battle area will stay in temporary shelters.

Before the year ends, they are expected to be transferred to the temporary shelters.

“We are discussing the reparation for the civilian properties damaged. We have no official master plan for rehabilitation yet because everything now is what we call recommendation,” said the spokesperson.

Meanwhile, authorities have recovered 144 dead bodies within the war zone.

133 of the cadavers have already been buried including terrorist leaders Isnilon Hapilon and Omar Maute while 61 individuals are still missing due to the clashes. — Victor Cosare | UNTV News & Rescue

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