Move to issue treasury bonds for Marawi rebuilding hit | Inquirer News
‘SIN IN ISLAM’

Move to issue treasury bonds for Marawi rebuilding hit

/ 05:17 AM August 14, 2018

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY — A civic leader in Marawi City on Monday said the Maranao people were offended by the government’s proposal to sell retail treasury bonds (RTBs) as a way to raise funds for the rehabilitation of the Lanao del Sur provincial capital.

Drieza Lininding, chair of the Moro Consensus Group, said he learned recently that P40 billion of the P62-billion budgetary requirement that the Department of Finance (DOF) had planned to raise for Marawi’s recovery efforts would be offered in the market as RTBs.

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He said this plan was an affront to the Maranao, whose houses and properties were destroyed when government forces engaged armed groups loyal to Islamic State in a five-month battle last year.

Insult

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“It is an insult for us, Muslim residents of Marawi, that our city will be rebuilt from usurious money,” he said.

“Usury is among the highest forms of sin in Islam, that’s why offering interest rates in Islam is forbidden,” Lininding said.

“In Islam, we believe in the principle of sharing benefits and risks, that’s why when we borrow money, it should be interest-free.”

RTBs are fixed income instruments issued by the government through the Bureau of the Treasury that are available to retail investors.

According to the bureau’s website, the bonds are affordable, convenient, low-risk and higher yielding than time deposit rates, short-term investment.

More rehab funds

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III had said the government was considering issuing bonds so it could raise more funds for Marawi.

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Already, about P10 billion was earmarked in this year’s General Appropriations Act, but Dominguez said the DOF needed to increase the funding requirement for the rehabilitation efforts.

“Where would the government get the interest rates? Are we up for sale? Is our misery an opportunity for some for an investment?” Lininding asked. —Jigger Jerusalem

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TAGS: Carlos Dominguez III, Marawi rehabilitation, Marawi siege, treasury bonds
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